Africa eyes Cambridge energy solution
A Cambridge UK business whose eco-friendly turbines generate energy from river currents and tidal streams has pitched its technology to a presidential delegation from Kenya.
Green-Tide Turbines CEO Michael Evans spent the day with the delegation, led by President Mwai Kibaki.
“Kenya is the gateway to Africa and represents a major potential market for Green-Tide,” said Evans, whose company is also in talks with other global governments.
Kenya would represent the company’s first sortie into Africa and is in the market for low-cost and eco-friendly energy technology. Tidal energy seems an ideal solution.
Kenya is on the Indian Ocean and also forms part of the African Great Lakes Region. Lake Victoria is the second largest freshwater lake in the world. There are also at least a dozen major rivers in Kenya not least the Mara, which traverses both Kenya and Tanzania and empties into Lake Victoria.
Evans said: “Kenya has a growth rate of four per cent with projected growth of 10 per cent. There have been massive discoveries of oil and gas and the country is rich in minerals yet the majority of the population live in poverty.
“Kenya has a stable government and strong leadership with inspired policies of open and free trade with foreign investors so conditions are likely to change swiftly, resulting in rapid economic growth.”
Evans said GT-T was already involved in the development of legal frameworks between the UK, Brazil, China and India to enable close R & D collaboration in line with the Lambert toolkit.
The Lambert toolkit, which emerged from the Lambert Working Group on Intellectual Property, is for universities and companies that wish to undertake collaborative research projects with each other and is a five-pronged model designed to maximise innovation.
Evans was part of No.10’s business delegation to the G20 summit in Mexico recently and the company earned another endorsement today when Baroness Wilcox, Parliamentary Under-Secretary for Business, Innovation and Skills, visited GT-T at ideaSpace in Cambridge.
Baroness Wilcox said: “I am delighted to be in Cambridge and to have the opportunity to visit Green-Tide Turbines which holds a UK patent for its technology.
“The company works in partnership with the University of Cambridge and its primary market is in the developing world where the cost of new energy infrastructure or supplying fuel is not economically viable.
“GT-T’s technology delivers greater efficiency and uses less material to generate energy from river currents and tidal streams. This a noble and outstanding venture and is a great example of a part government-funded project.”
Green-Tide’s turbines use natural water movement to generate electrical energy from river currents and tide streams. While the technology will eventually garner low-cost energy from some of the world’s largest rivers, such as the Amazon and the Ganges, it has other potential uses.
GT-T’s technology is also gaining traction within international industry as different applications are identified for the turbines – including possible uses in the bottling and packaging industries.
Business Weekly understands that the company has begun talks with a US-owned industrial giant with massive global penetration.