The provincial government of New Brunswick is offering to work with Saint John businesses to seize the tidal energy sector opportunities which arise from the city’s suitable location on the north shore of the Bay of Fundy.
During the meeting with representatives of Saint John businesses in the marine and waterfront sectors, Rick Doucet, the Province’s Agriculture, Aquaculture and Fisheries Minister, proposed the idea of holding a Tidal Energy Opportunities Summit in the province.
Doucet said: “I see a lot of value in holding a summit that looks at business opportunities related to the tidal energy sector. There is a range of opportunities for heavy industry to small businesses to create their own niche to support this sector.”
The meeting, co-sponsored by the Saint John Port Authority and the Bay of Fundy Business Council, was held with the purpose of exploring new opportunities for marine and waterfront sector businesses.
Officials from the port authority presented opportunities in support of tidal energy operations. They also noted that the major infrastructure needed to accommodate the heavy machinery involved was already in place in Saint John.
Doucet added: “Quite often, when we think of tidal energy, we tend to think only of the turbines themselves. Sometimes we forget about all the work, infrastructure and machinery required to support tidal energy. Only a handful of specialized businesses will make the turbines, but scores, perhaps even hundreds of businesses can find opportunities in support of tidal energy.”
Energy and Mines Minister, Donald Arseneault, supported the initiative by saying: “This summit will stimulate activity in tidal energy. As more businesses work with this industry, we can expect to see more activity in tidal generation to contribute to our energy mix.”
Jim Quinn, President and CEO of the Port Authority, added: “We look forward to working with our provincial partners to make a Tidal Energy Opportunities Summit in Saint John a success. We want to showcase the infrastructure we have in place at our port and promote the sophisticated operations that can provide the specialized support that is needed in tidal energy.”