Scotland gets electricity from tidal waves for the first time

Electricity flowed out of a pioneering tidal energy project for the first time in the Pentland Firth in Scotland.

According to Atlantis Resources, the Edinburgh-based company behind the MeyGen project, it had been working towards the landmark moment for almost a decade.

MeyGen located in a stretch of water between Caithness and Orkney, was one of the largest tidal arrays under construction anywhere in the world. Last week saw the installation and hook up of the first turbine to the onshore control centre. The turbine would be followed by three 1.5 megawatt (MW) turbines that will become operational as part of the first phase.

Work on the next phase, which benefited from a € 17-million grant, would start next year. When all 269 turbines are installed, MeyGen will have a  398 MW capacity.

Atlantis chief executive Tim Cornelius said: ''This is the moment we have been working towards since we first identified the MeyGen site back in 2007, and I am immensely proud of and grateful for the remarkable team of people who have contributed to this milestone – our suppliers, our funders, our supportive shareholders, and of course the project team, whose commitment, tenacity and belief have been without equal.

"I look forward to bringing more news of the project development over the coming weeks and months as we move into the full operational phase."

Cornelius added, "It's especially exciting to be making this announcement on the morning after the first 'super moon' in 68 years - last night, those of us with clear skies were able to get a good view of the powerhouse behind tidal energy, and be reminded that even in times like these there are still predictions we can rely on.

MeyGen had been described as the first large-scale tidal energy farm in the world.