UK parliamentary candidate and former carbon trader Iain McKie has spoken out against a proposal to build a tidal energy demonstration facility on Britain’s Isle of Wight, citing a lack of expertise by the companies in charge in developing CDM or JI projects.
The Perpetuus Tidal Energy Centre will lie around 1.6 miles south of the Isle of Wight and is estimated to produce up to 30MW of CO2-free tidal energy, or enough to power 15,000 homes on the island.
“The compan(ies) behind the project do not appear to have any experience in either the UN’s Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) or its Joint Implementation (JI). These two are the cornerstone of all global renewable energy projects, and are subject to UN approval,” he said in a press release for UKIP, the right wing political party on whose ticket McKie is fighting for election in May.
“I am concerned that without proven experience in either CDM or JI, the Perpetuus Tidal Energy Centre may not necessarily have the right skills available.”
The price of carbon credits under both schemes has plummeted since 2011 due to a lack of demand, causing many developers of clean technologies to disregard the mechanisms as a source of funding.
Just two tidal projects have been submitted for approval under the CDM since 2005, both of which are in South Korea, and none under JI.
One CDM project has had its validation terminated, while the other was registered in 2006 and has since received nearly 750,000 CERs for reducing emissions.
Despite having hundreds of renewable energy projects dotted across the country, Britain has no projects registered under either the CDM (in which it is ineligible to participate) or JI.
McKie also questioned the sustainability of the project and whether there had been research done on whether CO2 or methane would be emitted due to “unnatural disruptions” to the water, or if the island’s fishing industry would be put at risk.
“Some residents fear that the installations will damage their views, and will doubtless find themselves accused of pettiness. To that I say, if you want to know what a view is worth, ask an estate agent. Then consider the amount of money being removed from the value of your property, and ask yourself how you would feel,” he added.
McKie previously worked as a carbon trading at Bank of America Merrill Lynch and German utility E.on, before deciding to run for public office under UKIP’s banner.