The south west will be home to the UK’s first Marine Energy Park, announced cimate change minister Greg Barker on a visit to Bristol.
Barker was meeting those involved in the project, which is aimed at speeding up the progress of marine power development. Harnessing energy from waves or tides could potentially generate up to 27GW of power in the UK alone by 2050 – the equivalent to the power generated from eight coal-fired power stations.
The south west park will stretch from Bristol through to Cornwall and as far as the Isles of Scilly. The project will be a collaboration between national and local government, Local Enterprise Partnerships, the Universities of Plymouth and Exeter and industry including Cornwall’s Wave Hub.
Barker said: “Marine power has huge potential in the UK not just in contributing to a greener electricity supply and cutting emissions, but in supporting thousands of jobs in a sector worth a possible £15bn to the economy to 2050.
“The UK is already a world leader in wave and tidal power, so we should capitalise on this leadership to make marine power a real contender in the future energy market.”