MPs call for more tidal and marine
A Parliamentary Committee has called for the UK to generate a “significant proportion” of its power from tidal and marine energy.
A new report published by the Environmental Audit Committee (EAC) today highlights that in the British Energy Security Strategy tidal technologies get “scant attention” despite tidal range having a significant benefit of predictable and reliable, year-round, energy generation.
The report, titled “Accelerating the transition from fossil fuels and securing energy supplies”, stated: “Tidal energy projects should be a vital component of the Government’s strategies for delivering both net zero and energy security.”
The EAC recommends that “the UK should be aiming to generate a significant proportion of its power from these sources by the middle of the 2030s”.
The British Hydropower Association (BHA), home to the Tidal Range Alliance, welcomed the EAC report, the result of a nine-month inquiry to consider the transitional role of oil and gas in the UK’s energy mix and to scrutinise the Government’s British Energy Security Strategy.
The Government has previously withdrawn support for Tidal Range, stating that costs are higher than alternative sources of low-carbon power.
However, a recent review undertaken by the University of Birmingham found that the Tidal Range is cost-competitive with other low-carbon energy projects.
The BHA recommend that the Government extend the support being received by the newly formed “Great British Nuclear”, which is receiving a £120m development fund for new projects.
The Government should match this with “Great British Tidal Range” and an equal development fund to bring forward the 13GW of Tidal range projects currently proposed, said the BHA.
This should sit alongside a development road map to ensure the more urgent speed and scale of delivery that the EAC report recommends, it added.
The report stated the need for grid reliability that embraces smart opportunities and requires deeper flexibility.