UK government urged to set long-term commitment to marine energy

Illustration (Photo: Tidal Energy Ltd)
Illustration (Photo: Tidal Energy Ltd)

Responding to the increasing uncertainty regarding the government’s commitment to wave and tidal power, Regen SW has joined forces with Highlands and Islands Enterprise and Marine Energy Pembrokeshire to publish a new assessment of the UK’s marine energy potential.

The report ‘Marine Energy: Key steps to a great British success story’ argues that the UK has already benefited from the investments made in developing innovative marine energy technology and now has the potential to take a leadership position in a new global industry.

The report focuses on the economic benefits and the wider value that has been created for UK coastal communities in Cornwall, Wales, Orkney Islands and across Scotland but also highlights that the gains made to date are at risk unless UK and its regional partners continue to provide support as the industry reaches commercial maturity.

Johnny Gowdy from Regen SW said: “We have been pressing government for some time to set out its long term commitment to marine energy, unfortunately a combination of budget constraints and the lack of a clear policy direction is beginning to have a negative impact on investor confidence.

“This is especially frustrating at a time when we can see the benefits of technology development, and the first full-scale deployments of wave and tidal energy at sites like Wave Hub in Cornwall, the Orkney Islands, Pembrokeshire and elsewhere around the UK.

“While the report was written before the EU referendum result, it sends a strong message that if the UK is ‘open for business’ and wants to continue to play a leadership role in the development of new low carbon technology in Europe and beyond, it needs to back its own industry.”

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