Grant supports renewable energy development

NANAIMO – Federal government announces cash for marine alternative energy at export workshop.

Cash awarded at a recent export workshop in Nanaimo could benefit local companies involved in renewable marine energy.

Ed Fast, federal minister for international trade, announced $60,275 from the government’s Opportunities for Associations program for Marine Renewables Canada at the workshop, hosted to provide tools and information small and medium-size enterprises can use to capitalize on international business and export opportunities.

Marine Renewables Canada is the trade association for Canada’s tidal and wave power production equipment manufacturers, research, design and engineering firms.

The money will go toward covering travel expenses to send industry representatives to technology and trade conferences in Europe in 2015 and 2016, said Scot Merriam, an engineer with Nanaimo-based SRM Projects.

SRM representatives plan on attending the International Conference on Ocean Energy in Edinburgh in 2016.

“SRM’s interests are in project management and project development so we’re always keeping an eye open for the latest in technology, what people are doing, how they’re mitigating impacts and things like this,” Merriam said.

B.C.’s industry is in its infancy compared to other alternative energy technologies, he said. There are no Nanaimo manufacturers and just a few applications for tidal power test projects on Vancouver Island.