LCRI Marine agrees with the First Minister's Energy Policy Statement in that we have the marine resource, the grid, the ports, the science, the supply chain, the workforce and the political will to enable the marine renewable energy sector to flourish. However a marine energy sector will not be built overnight in Wales.
Although the benefits to the Welsh economy could be substantial, it is a long-term investment and is considered to be high risk because the sector is still in the early stages of technological development.
LCRI Marine advocates that Wales sends out a clear message to the emerging marine energy sector to enable Wales to increase its profile at the UK, European and Global marketplace. We agree with Welsh Government's view that an over-arching group needs to be established to ensure existing and future programs are all working in unison.
This group should set research, development and demonstration agendas and pave the route to commercialisation. The short term aim of this group should be joining up all the expertise in Wales with a medium to longer term view of creating a Welsh Marine Energy Park. The Welsh Marine Energy Park should aim to bring the first commercial projects in English and Welsh waters to Wales.
Ian Masters, LCRI Marine Principle Investigator said, "From the First Minister's Energy Policy Statement LCRI Marine very much welcomes the significant role of marine renewable energy in Wales' future energy mix. and look forward to continue working closely with Welsh Government and Welsh businesses", adding "Marine Energy is the future, we need to catch that vision now and put our talents into making it into a success story for Wales."
Miles Willis, LCRI Marine Project Manager said, "It is only by joining together the existing marine renewable energy activities across the private and public sectors into one strategic unit that Wales can truly realise the potential of generating significant amounts of electricity from the Welsh seas"
LCRI Marine is a collaboration of all the leading academic marine institutions in Wales aiming to enable, support and help build a sustainable marine energy sector in Wales. It provides the independent and world-class research essential to move the marine renewable energy industry forward.
The project team is involved in the development and application of tools which optimise the performance of the technology. It also evaluates devices that recover energy from waves, tidal streams and tidal ranges around the Welsh coast. In particular, the group considers the likely effects that these devices have on the environment, such as their effect on seabed communities, sediment transport and marine wildlife.
Dr Ian Masters, Swansea University
Tel 01792 295688
Dr Miles Willis, Swansea University
Tel 01792 295541
- Thursday 22 March 2012 00.00 GMT
- Wednesday 14 March 2012 10.27 GMT
- Swansea University, Tel: 01792 295050