France announces winners of tidal farm tender

Manuel Valls, French Prime Minister, has announced the winners of a call for tender for pilot tidal energy farms in West Normandy, France. Europe’s ocean energy industry welcomed the announcement, stating that it marked the beginning of the next stage of development for the sector – commercialisation.

The winning consortia, GDF SUEZ/Alstom and EDF/DCNS/OpenHydro will be the first to construct the projects in the Cotentin, an area which represents one of the best tidal resources in the world.

Commenting on the announcement, Sian George, CEO of Ocean Energy Europe, said: “Following the Meygen project in Scotland reaching financial close, today’s announcement is further proof that Europe continues to move forward in creating a ocean energy industry. The challenges involved are not insignificant; but France is demonstrating leadership by providing support for the sector to demonstrate pilot arrays. We look forward to seeing other Member States following France’s lead.”

EDF and DCNS proposed a 17MW array of OpenHydro turbines. GDF is planning an 8.4MW array composed of six 1.4MW Alstom turbines.

Press Release; Image: OpenHydro/Illustration