- Launch of £20 million Government funding for first marine energy arrays
- Marine Energy Array Demonstrator scheme will help kick-start a commercial wave & tidal industry
- Technology has the potential to generate up to 20% of our energy needs and deliver over 10,000 jobs
RenewableUK, the trade association for the wind, wave and tidal industry, has welcomed the launch of the Marine Energy Array Demonstrator (MEAD) scheme, which will provide £20 million of funding for the first marine arrays.
An 'array' is an arrangement of multiple wave and/or tidal power devices, analogous to multiple wind turbines arranged into a wind farm. There are currently several single devices in operation around the UK, including the SeaGen device at Strangford Lough, the Tidal Generation Limited, Oyster wave power and Open Centre Turbine projects at Orkney, and the DeltaStream project off Pembrokeshire.
RenewableUK's Wave & Tidal Development Manager, David Krohn, said: "The marine energy industry has the potential to allow us to generate clean electricity equivalent to up to 20% of our needs using the inexhaustible power of the sea. The MEAD scheme will provide enough funding to deliver two arrays, which will help kick-start the industry, and we welcome it.
"However, it's important to recognise that this is only the beginning of the road to building marine energy into a fully commercial industry. Our research shows that £120 million of capital support is required to overcome barriers to commercial development and unlock our share of this global industry. We look forward to the opportunities that the Green Investment Bank can provide to help drive the industry forwards."
RenewableUK is the trade and professional body for the UK wind and marine renewables industries. Formed in 1978, and with more than 650 corporate members, RenewableUK is the leading renewable energy trade association in the UK. Wind has been the world's fastest growing renewable energy source for the last seven years, and this trend is expected to continue with falling costs of wind energy and the urgent international need to tackle CO2 emissions to prevent climate change.
RenewableUK is hosting the world's first ever global offshore wind industry conference at London's Excel Arena on 13th and 14th June 2012. The UK's leading position in this field makes this event a focus for discussions not just for offshore wind technology, but also the wider decarbonisation agenda and the economic, as well as environmental, benefits associated with green growth. Full details can be found here: http://www.renewable-uk.com/events/global-offshore-wind-2012/index.html. Speakers include the Secretary of State for Energy & Climate Change, Ed Davey MP, with more to be confirmed.
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