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Tidal lagoon power: Swansea project gets green light


Planning consent has just been given for construction of the world’s first tidal lagoon the Swansea Bay Tidal Project.

The energy secretary Amber Rudd has given planning permission to one of the most expensive renewable energy schemes ever seen in Britain. The £1 billon project will provide 150,000 homes with electricity from a tidal lagoon at Swansea Bay

When built, the lagoons turbines in the proposed six-mile horseshoe shaped sea wall around the bay in Wales could generate around 500GWh per year of low carbon electricity.

Hydroelectric power

Mark Shorrock, Chief Executive of Tidal Lagoon Swansea Bay, said the project was a “game changer” that should trigger a much wider industry in tidal energy around the UK.

Although the Conservative party has made it clear that it wants to end subsidies for onshore wind farms, the Swansea Bay Lagoon project is seen to potentially provide more opportunities for jobs and exports than smaller wind farm schemes.

Energy and Climate Change and Wales Office Minister Lord Bourne said: “We need more clean and home-grown sources of energy, which will help to reduce our reliance on foreign fossil fuels. Low carbon energy projects like the tidal lagoon in Swansea Bay could bring investment, support local jobs and help contribute to the Welsh economy and Swansea area.”

Renewable energy

The Swansea project is part of a wider move towards renewable energy in the UK. Smaller businesses can increasingly switch electricity supplier to one that reflects their ethical or economic priorities – or a mixture of both.

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