RenewableUK - formerly the British Wind Energy Association - has demanded £500M from government to prime the wave, tidal and offshore markets and propel the UK into a world leader.
Ambitious plans drawn-up by the RenewableUK see a massive £500M investment into the marine, tidal and offshore wind sectors over the next two years to ensure the UK maintains its lead.
RenewableUK says 1-2GW of wave and tidal power, enough to power 1.4M homes, could be powered online by 2020.
The government also released its Strategic Environmental Assessment (SEA) for wave and tidal power, unlocking £60M in research and development for new technologies, but RenewableUK say much more money must be invested.
£150M-£200M should be invested in wave and tidal, they say, with a further £300M in offshore wind.
RenewableUK chief executive Maria McCaffrey said the £200M needed for wave and tidal was: “relatively modest”, but would bring huge returns.
RenewableUK’s Head of Offshore Renewables, Peter Madigan, said: “The SEA for offshore energy is a welcome initiative. However, there needs to be a greater awareness on the initial investment needs of this industry. The Danish government spent £1.3bn to establish onshore wind, which currently brings £2.7bn per year inrevenue.
“A properly capitalised wave and tidal sector could create 43,500 direct jobs and generate a potential £4.2bn per year in revenue for the UK economy,” he said.
According to RenewableUK figures, the UK is the world leader in wave and tidal, with some 2.4MW of installed power, another 27MW with planning consent, and 77.5MW of projects in planning.
It says 700MW of installed power is expected in the Pentland Firth alone by 2020.