Nova Scotia is taking control of the research and development efforts that will help shape its offshore energy future. The province is investing $6.4 million in research and development, new online delivery models and laboratory equipment to secure better access to scientific information and ultimately generate more wealth and energy from offshore Nova Scotia. “It’s important that we set our own research priorities and it’s important that we make the results of this research public,” Bill Dooks, Minister of Energy, said today, April 27. “We know that our offshore is a frontier, that we have great potential but that research around our geology and tidal power is relatively new. By doing more research, we believe we can build better understanding and attract new companies to do business here.” Two new, non-profit research associations have been established. OETR (Offshore Energy Technical Research) will encourage research into Nova Scotia’s offshore petroleum geology. OEER (Offshore Energy and Environmental Research) will sponsor studies of a variety of environmental matters including the effects of energy exploration on the marine environment. “Nova Scotia competes on a global level to attract exploration dollars,” said Barry Clouter, chair of the Offshore/Onshore Technologies Association of Nova Scotia. “The better these exploration companies understand the region’s geology, the more likely they are to come and spend those dollars here in our province.” Each of the new associations has been given $2.6 million in initial funding from the province, for a total of $5.2 million. Assisting with the promotion of Nova Scotia’s offshore is a $1-million grant to the Canada-Nova Scotia Offshore Petroleum Board, which was announced on Tuesday, April 25. The board maintains a large amount of data related to offshore geology in its data archive, core storage and laboratory facility, known as the core lab. The board says it will use the grant to expand its core lab and upgrade its capacity to manage digital information. About $175,000 will be spent on laboratory equipment at the basin and reservoir laboratory at Dalhousie University, which studies petroleum geology. Mr. Dooks said other jurisdictions, including New Zealand and Australia, are pursuing similar strategies.