HALIFAX, Feb. 20 /CNW/ - (TSX - EMA): Emera Inc. has invested
(euro) 10.2 million (C$15 million) to acquire a 7.4% interest in OpenHydro
Group Limited, an Irish renewable tidal energy company. OpenHydro designs and
manufactures marine turbines for harnessing energy from tidal currents under
the world's oceans - silently and invisibly generating electricity at no cost
to the environment.
"This is an exciting opportunity for Emera to invest in a company that is
developing new technology for the growing world renewable energy market," said
Emera CEO Chris Huskilson. "This investment is a manageable first step and
part of Emera's Renewable Energy Strategy."
OpenHydro has developed a unique Open-Centre Turbine technology that is
environmentally friendly. Its commercial scale test turbine is operating at
the European Marine Energy Centre in Orkney, Scotland.
Nova Scotia Power, an Emera Inc. company, selected OpenHydro's
Open-Centre Turbine technology in 2007 for deployment in a tidal energy
demonstration project in the Bay of Fundy. The Province of Nova Scotia
recently announced that the technology proposed by Nova Scotia Power and
OpenHydro is among those that will be tested in the Bay of Fundy starting in
2009. The Nova Scotia Power-OpenHydro demonstration project has been approved
for funding from Sustainable Development Technology Canada (SDTC), a
not-for-profit corporation created by the Government of Canada that provides
funding to emerging clean technologies.
Emera will hold one seat on OpenHydro's seven member Board of Directors.
"We are very pleased to have Emera join our team," said Brendan Gilmore,
Chairman, OpenHydro Group Limited. "Their operational knowledge and expertise
complement our existing skill set very well. Together, we can build on
OpenHydro's future program for tidal farms, silently and invisibly generating
renewable energy under the world's oceans."
Emera will finance the acquisition from its balance sheet. The
transaction closed today, February 20, 2008
Forward Looking Information
This news release contains forward-looking information. Actual future
results may differ materially. Additional financial and operational
information is filed electronically with various securities commissions in
Canada through the System for Electronic Document Analysis and Retrieval
About Emera Inc.
(EMA-TSX) is an energy and services company with $4.0 billion in assets.
Electricity is Emera's core business. The company has two wholly-owned
regulated electric utility subsidiaries, Nova Scotia Power Inc. and Bangor
Hydro-Electric Company, which together serve 590,000 customers. Emera also
owns 19% of St. Lucia Electricity Services Limited, which serves more than
50,000 customers on the Caribbean island of St. Lucia. In addition to its
electric utility investments, Emera has a joint venture interest in Bear
Swamp, a 600 megawatt pumped storage hydro-electric facility in northern
Massachusetts; a 12.9% interest in the Maritimes & Northeast Pipeline; and
Emera Energy Services which manages energy assets on behalf of third parties.
Visit Emera on the web at www.emera.com.
About OpenHydro Group Limited:
OpenHydro was formed in 2004 following the acquisition of the world
technology rights to the Open-Centre Turbine.
OpenHydro's technology is based on the unique Open-Centre Turbine that
converts the movement of water directly into electricity. Advantages of
generating electricity using this technology include:
- The electricity produced is completely renewable since it relies on
tidal currents that are created by the gravitational effect of the sun
and moon on the world's oceans.
- Whereas other forms of renewable energy are dependent on the weather
conditions that day (e.g., the amount of wind or a clear sky), tidal
energy is completely predictable giving the electricity produced a
- Since the turbines are located beneath the surface, they are protected
from storm damage and cannot be seen or heard. The design is considered
to have no impact on marine mammals since it has no oils which can
leak, no exposed blade tips and a significant opening at its centre.
- Due to the density of water, a relatively small turbine can produce the
same power as a much larger wind turbine.
Alderney Renewable Energy chose OpenHydro to install an array of
Open-Centre Turbines on the sea bed around Alderney, which has some of the
strongest tidal flows in the world.
For further information:
For further information: Sasha Irving, Director, Corporate
Communications, Emera Inc., (902) 428-6685; Jennifer Nicholson, CA Director,
Investor Relations and Strategic Development, Emera Inc., (902) 428-6347;
Brian Bell, Managing Director, Wilson Hartnell Public Relations, +353 1 669 00
30, firstname.lastname@example.org; Andrew McLindon, Account Director, Wilson Hartnell
Public Relations, +353 1 669 00 30, email@example.com