A feasibility study of plans to generate affordable energy from tidal resources in the Mersey Estuary has begun..
The North West Regional Development Agency (NWDA) and private firm Peel Energy are carrying out the research.
A team comprising Scott Wilson, EDF, Drivas Jonas, RSK, APEM, Turner and Townsend, Regeneris, University of Liverpool and a number of other advisors has been selected as preferred bidder to undertake the study.
The objectives of the study are to identify a single preferred tidal power scheme that stands the greatest chance of delivering the maximum affordable energy from the tidal resources in the Mersey estuary, with acceptable impacts on the environment, shipping, business and the community.
The Power From The Mersey project is believed to have the potential to generate enough green energy to supply a significant percentage of homes in the region.
It could also make a significant contribution to the Government’s target of generating 15% of the UK’s energy from renewable sources by 2020.
NWDA chief executive Steven Broomhead said: “Currently, over 40% of the UK’s carbon dioxide emissions come from energy usage, which could be reduced by investing in renewable energy sources.
“The energy and environmental technologies sector makes a vital contribution to the North West’s economy, employing over 50,000 people, while renewable and low carbon energy sources such as wind, tidal, biomass and biofuels are in operation throughout the region.”