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Government needs visionary approach to marine renewables

MPs called for the government to have a more “visionary approach” to develop wave and tidal technology powers in a report released by Energy and Climate Change select committee this week.

With the UK having the largest wave and tidal resources in Europe, which could generate up to 20% of the country’s electricity needs, MPs are calling for a “visionary approach” for the UK to remain at the forefront of the technology’s development.

The report said the UK is already a world leader in wave and tidal technology, with seven of the eight full-scale prototypes installed across the world in the UK.

But the report warns that an “overly cautious” approach to developing this sector could lead other countries to steal the UK’s lead.

“In the eighties the UK squandered the lead it had in wind power development and now Denmark has a large share of the worldwide market in turbine manufacturing,” said Energy and Climate Change select committee chairman Tim Yeo.

Readers' comments (2)

  • So to summarize, the MPs have decided that it would be a good idea if the engineers could come up with a good idea. This sounds just like the good idea they had about reducing the cost of offshore wind turbine foundations, (i.e. it'd be a good idea if they didn't cost so much!)

    Well we are trying, but there's only so much that can be done. Offshore is often difficult and usually expensive. I'm very sorry, but having lots of water and lots of waves doesn't immediately equate to having lots of cheap energy.

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  • The "lead" in windpower the 1980s must have been missed by most people. Denmark were well ahead from the start and never looked back. In the 1970s they subsidised farmers, in particular, and visitors to Denmark at that time would have been impressed by the numbers of wind generators in the countryside. Here in the UK, goernment steadfastly refused to countenanace subsidies and reasonable FITs for wind generated power. Don't let us fool ourselves. We did not lead and we still trail.

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