The Environmental Audit Committee have penned an open letter to Kwasi Kwarteng, Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, in which they call for the government to provide support to a home grown tidal industry to help it reach the point of commercialisation.

The committee have recognised and highlighted a number of the unique benefits of developing and supporting tidal energy at home, including the reliable and predictable nature of tides complementing our energy mix, increasing investment in coastal regions, driving business to specialist UK supply chains, boosting UK export potential, and maintaining an international market leading position.

The committee urge the government to consider financial mechanisms to support the industry to the point where projects can begin to attract significant commercial investment.

Additionally, the letter calls for a reconsideration of tidal range projects. The letter highlights that the longevity of such projects result in affordable energy over their lifespan and that appropriate long term considerations have not been made.  Click here to read the EAC’s letter

Complementing this support, a new study from the University of Plymouth suggests that wave power has the potential to provide at least 15% of the UK’s annual electricity demand.

The study, published in Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews, highlights the UK’s position at the forefront of offshore renewable power generation before drawing attention to some of the unique commercial challenges and technical complications that have faced wave energy to date.  For the full potential to be realised there will need to be an extensive programme of collaboration, investment and innovation involving governments, science, industry, and landowners. If successful this could cement the UK’s position as global market leaders as well as significantly diversifying the UK’s clean energy mix which at present is heavily reliant on offshore wind.  Click here for the Highlights and Abstract (full paper behind paywall).

Meanwhile, Blue Gem Wind, a joint venture between Total and Simply Blue Energy which is progressing the Celtic Sea’s first floating wind project, Erebus, a 96MW test and demonstration project 45 kilometres off the coast of Pembrokeshire, has welcomed the announcement from The Crown Estate to create new floating wind leasing opportunities in the Celtic Sea.  Click here to read CE’s announcement

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