Although currently a relatively modest capacity of marine technology is in place at 3.5 MW, RenewableUK Chief Executive Maria McCaffery says the plans in place put wave and tidal as real contenders for UK energy security.
Ms McCaffery said: “It makes absolute sense for us to harness our own natural resources and secure our energy independence. There are two elements to this:
“Firstly, the vulnerability of the supply; we are heavily dependent on imports. Secondly, the volatility of the price. If its not our resource we are at the mercy of the same supplier.”
With 11 MW of projects consented for construction and a further 23 in the planning stage the industry is growing at a rate of knots.
Central to developing wave and tidal in the UK, according to the RenewableUK boss, is investment in young people: “We have a job to do, to inspire, incentivise, motivate young people to think in technical terms and pursue the disciplines that are going to give us the workforce we need in ten years time.”
“In 15 years we’re expecting the energy equivalent of two million homes to be powered by wave and tidal energy.”