Welsh marine body Marine Energy Wales has submitted an environmental scoping report to the relevant stakeholders for the development of the Marine Energy Test Area (META) project in and around the Milford Haven Waterway.
The scoping opinion, sought from Natural Resources Wales and others, is for the META project that will see the creation of a series of pre-consented, non-grid connected areas suitable for a range of component, sub-assembly and marine energy device tests.
The scoping report considers a mix of wave and tidal energy testing, and asks for a formal opinion on what issues should be covered by an Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA), according to Marine Energy Wales.
The ‘scoping opinion’ will determine which key issues the EIA should address and what environmental surveys need to be undertaken to enable operations and deployment of full-scale devices in 2020, the Welsh marine body said.
Joseph Kidd, Operations Manager for META, said: “META will fill the gap for early stage marine energy testing in the UK and combined with the £76 million Pembroke Dock Marine Project, will place Pembrokeshire and Wales on the main stage for this emerging global market.”
The report follows site selection and feasibility studies for the META project, which began in 2017.
META is aiming to be open for business as early as next year with specified activities accommodated in association with the Port of Milford Haven,
The £1.9 million project is being supported by the European Regional Development Fund through Welsh government, along with the Coastal Communities Fund.