I welcome the Hendry review which states that tidal bay energy can make a “strong contribution” to the UK’s energy supply.
The Hendry review took place primarily to investigate if the UK Government should be actively supporting this new green energy resource. The report focused on the Swansea Bay tidal lagoon, but it will have positive implications for Flintshire and north Wales.
The Hendry review made 30 conclusions, including:
• The technology would “contribute positively” towards the UK’s decarbonisation goals;
• It was “beyond question” that local economic regeneration would follow a tidal lagoon;
• It offers “significant economic opportunity” for Wales and the UK;
• The potential impact on consumer bills of large scale tidal lagoons “appears attractive, particularly when compared to nuclear projects” in the long term;
• A high level of monitoring of environmental impacts would still be needed;
• A Tidal Power Authority should oversee the new industry; and
• Competitive tendering for future projects “to deliver the most substantial cost reductions” – similar to the nuclear industry.
Only recently I met with stakeholders pushing for a new tidal lagoon in north Wales and questioned the Government on its approach towards the Hendry review. If the tidal lagoon would go ahead it would bring with it jobs and investment to our coastline.
I am delighted by the findings of the Hendry review. It demonstrates that this new green energy resource is ready for us to exploit. Charles Hendry’s report makes some very important points surrounding protection of the natural environment whilst the lagoon is under construction and during operation and I fully support these.
Flintshire is already a world leader in offshore wind power and now we could be on the cusp of becoming one of the first regions in the world to introduce this new energy manufacturing technology. Not only will this bring jobs and investment to our region whilst it is being constructed but it will bring long term employment opportunities with the maintenance and running of the lagoon.
The ball is now in the Government’s court and they should act now. They should demonstrate that they are serious about climate change and reducing people’s energy bills and invest into tidal lagoon technology.