Geotechnical investigation work for the proposed tidal lagoon in Swansea Bay is about to begin as Tidal Lagoon Power Plc starts the process of determining seabed conditions in the area.
Undertaken by contractor ESG, Environmental Scientifics Group, the seabed investigation work will be carried out over a four week period via vessels and a jack-up barge. Results will determine physical characteristics in order that plans for the world’s first, purpose-built, tidal lagoon power plant can be further progressed.
Capable of generating electricity equivalent to Swansea’s entire domestic consumption, the proposed 250MW power plant will produce predictable, baseload electricity for 16 hours each day, using both the ebb and flood tides. It will save over 200,000 tonnes of CO2 per year for its design life of over 100 years.
The project represents an investment of £650 million, and according to the development company behind the scheme is a significant opportunity for Wales to take the lead in the tidal industry for the UK. The power plant could be connected to the National Grid and be ‘power ready’ in 2017.
Ton Fijen, Technical Director for Tidal Lagoon Power plc says:
“The Swansea project will hopefully be the first in a network of lagoons around the UK coastline, driving a critical change in our energy mix with low cost, low carbon electricity sources that are sustainable long-term.”
“Detailed plans for the lagoon are now being finalised prior to beginning formal consultation in summer 2013. Our intention, subject to design readiness, is to submit an application for development consent to the Planning Inspectorate in the late autumn of 2013. These investigation works are an important step in this process as the results will be used to determine our engineering strategy.”
Swansea Bay Tidal Lagoon is being promoted and developed by Tidal Lagoon Power Limited (TLP). TLP’s focus is the development of a series of tidal lagoons to generate renewable energy from the rise and fall of the considerable tidal range to be found in Welsh and UK waters.