The sustainable energy developer said joint venture documents were signed on Tuesday creating the Normandie Hydrolienne company (NH), which would now commence site development, permitting, and consenting works to allow for the construction of an array of tidal energy projects.
SIMEC added that NH would aim to energise the first tidal power turbines in 2021 before rolling out larger projects from 2022.
The company said the projects, combined with others in the area, could create a 2-gigawatt energy source, the largest tidal energy project in Europe.
NH, in which SIMEC will hold a majority stake, will establish an operational presence in Normandy and was expected to begin recruitment immediately.
Tim Cornelius, chief executive of SIMEC Atlantis, said that Normandy had “all of the attributes required to deliver large scale tidal power projects”, such as a natural resource close to “load, available grid capacity, a feed-in-tariff, an established offshore energy supply chain and port facilities in Cherbourg and Le Have and access to EU funding”.
Raz Blanchard, also known as the Alderney Race, is a strait that runs between the Channel Island of Alderney and the tip of Normandy with a strong current that can run up to 12 knots.
In lunchtime trading Wednesday, SIMEC shares were steady around 16.7p.