Tidal project back on the map

Eric Ollerenshaw

Eric Ollerenshaw

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THE prospect of putting a tidal barrage on the River Wyre has been given a further boost following a Parliamentary debate.

Fleetwood MP Eric Ollerenshaw raised the 20-year-old plan in a debate on electricity market reform last week.

He asked of Secretary of State for Energy and Climate change Chris Huhne: “I wonder whether the Secretary of State is aware that there has been a proposal in my constituency for a tidal barrage for the last 20 years.

“Is there anything in the proposals that will finally allow such developments to compete on a level playing field with proposals for wind?”

Mr Huhne said: “That is one of the technologies that we are taking forward in the renewables road map, and I want to make progress on it.

“We have a considerable resource in that technology, which we want to develop further right the way around the United Kingdom’s sea frontier.

A tidal barrage is a dam-like structure used to capture the energy from masses of water moving due to tidal forces.

However, the largest proposed UK scheme to date – the River Severn Tidal Barrage – was scrapped late last year due to the cost of the project.

Members of Wyre Tidal Energy put their case for funding to MPs last year with a scheme that could operate at a fraction of that cost.