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Government to invest in tidal power

Words: Laura Edgar
Newhaven Harbour / Ian Goodridge, Shutterstock_2067630038

As part of its renewable energy auction scheme, the UK Government has pledged to invest £20 million a year in tidal stream electricity.

It said the investment starts a “new chapter” for the tidal industry and will create jobs across the UK.

The ring-fenced money will be allocated as part of the fourth round of the Contracts for Difference Scheme, which is due to open in December. It is hoped that the money will enable the marine energy sector to develop its technologies and lower costs.

This means the total funding for this Contracts for Difference Scheme allocation round is £285 million a year.

The government noted that the “clockwork predictability of the tides” means that tidal energy could be a most reliable source of generation.

Energy secretary Kwasi Kwarteng said: “As an island nation we are perfectly placed to capitalise on clean marine energy, building on our booming offshore wind sector which is now a British industrial success story.

“We hope to see marine energy follow in the successful footprints of other renewable technologies, where we’ve seen costs fall dramatically in recent years, thanks to UK government support.

“The investment provides a major push for tidal power to become a key part of the next generation of renewable electricity projects needed to strengthen energy security as we work to reduce our dependence on volatile fossil fuels.”

Image credit | Ian Goodridge, Shutterstock