UK MP calls for manifesto commitment on tidal lagoons

Neil Parish, a Member of Parliament (MP) for Tiverton and Honiton, has supported the inclusion of the Swansea Bay tidal lagoon in the Conservative manifesto for the upcoming general election in the UK.

During the Commons debate held on March 26, 2017, Parish pressed the Secretary of State for Wales, Alun Cairns, on the UK government’s plans to fund a ‘pathfinder’ tidal lagoon project in the Swansea Bay.

Parish inquired about the date the UK government plans to respond to the positive recommendations for the tidal lagoon industry made in the Hendry Review, and also, about the possible inclusion of the Swansea Bay tidal scheme in the Conservative manifesto, expressing his support for harnessing the world-class tides of the Swansea Bay for energy production.

Alun Cairns responded: “I have been in close discussions with Cabinet colleagues about our response to the Hendry review, which we are actively considering. Any potential energy project that can contribute to a clean, secure and diverse energy mix for the UK is worthy of serious consideration. Projects of this scale must also meet the essential requirement of delivering value for money for the taxpayer.

“My honourable friend is right to recognize that natural resources in Wales can play a significant role in the energy mix of not only Wales, but the UK. We would like this type of project to succeed, but of course it needs to be value for money for the taxpayer.”

Tidal Lagoon Power, the developer behind the proposed £1.3 billion Swansea Bay tidal lagoon, is still awaiting a subsidy agreement with the UK government.

The subsidy agreement could be reached in June, according to media reports, after which Tidal Lagoon Power will need to secure a marine license from the Natural Resources Wales in order for any of the marine works to start.

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