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Socio-Economic Analysis

Methodology   Results   References  


The UK, and in particular Scotland has the opportunity to secure substantial jobs as a result of local fabrication of generating units for marine current developments - within the areas of fabrication services, hydraulic equipment, generators and power transmission products, and installation and maintenance contracts. Scotland has a background in pioneering marine engineering, and could further exploit this in future, to develop a market niche in tidal flow energy systems. However, some sources say this skills base is in decline. Education and re-training programmes could help to maintain current expertise in this area.

The aim of the socio-economic analysis was to predict the potential UK jobs created by each scenario.
The methodology carried out in "Opportunities for marine energy in Scotland" document for the Scottish Executive (Future Energy Solutions, 2002) was adapted for this purpose.

The calculation was as follows:

The employment multiplier is often used in such calculations to factor in the jobs created in related industries. These multiplier values are specified by the Scottish Executive for various industries. As the marine energy industry is very new, there is no existing employment multiplier for this industry, so it was necessary to take the employment multiplier for the closely related industries of "Shipbuilding and repair" and "Electric Motors and generators", and find a mean value between the two. Additional jobs are in two categories, indirect and induced. Indirect jobs are those required to support the main workers, induced are those that are caused by the increased economic prosperity when the new employees increase their consumption in other areas such as entertainment.

For the minimum storage and maximum storage scenarios, implementation dates and installed capacity for each phase, year by year, were specified. A chart showing the installation plan could then be created, shown below:

The timescale for the maximum storage capacity is longer as the capacity being installed in this scenario is substantially larger, so it will take additional time to install these extra devices.

Using this timescale, a spreadsheet could be made to calculate the jobs created over time (direct, indirect and induced) and produce a chart of potential employment.

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Click on one of the links below to see scenario-specific results:

Minimum Storage (best baseload) Strategy

Maximum Storage (maximum output) Strategy

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  • Richard Boud, Future Energy Solutions (Nov 2002), Opportunities for Marine Current Energy in Scotland, Scottish Executive.
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