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Wales offers lagoon cash

First Minister pledges ‘substantial investment’ to 320MW Swansea project

Wales offers lagoon cash image

The Welsh government has pledged to make a “substantial investment” in Tidal Lagoon Power’s (TLP) proposed 320MW Swansea Bay as it criticised a perceived lack of action by Westminster.

First Minister Carwyn Jones has written to Prime Minister Theresa May offering to cover some of the cost of the £1.3bn project.

Jones accused the UK government of “dragging its heels” over making a decision to support TLP’s project with a bilaterally negotiated Contract for Difference (CfD).

Cardiff is considering a "substantial equity and/or loan investment that would reduce the cost of capital for the project and hence reduce the subsidy requirement," he said.

The level of investment is to be agreed between the Welsh government, the UK government and the project.

Any investment by Wales would be conditional on the UK government agreeing to an appropriate CfD arrangement and the project securing any necessary licenses and consents.

It is 12 months since former energy minister Charles Hendry said backing a so-called pathfinder project would be a “no-regrets policy” in his review of lagoons commissioned in 2016 by the UK government.

“Now is the time for the UK government to stop stalling and get on with agreeing a strike price so we can make this transformative project a reality," the First Minister added.

TLP hailed the move as a “breakthrough” for the project.

“We look forward to working alongside the Welsh government to now close the deal for Swansea Bay tidal lagoon with the UK government,” said chief executive Mark Shorrock.

Image: Swansea Bay project (Tidal Lagoon Power)

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