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MPs call on government to back Swansea Bay tidal lagoon

News   •   Feb 15, 2017 13:50 GMT

A letter signed by 107 MPs has called on the government to give its backing to the Swansea Bay tidal lagoon.

The letter addressed to Business and Energy Secretary Greg Clark has been signed by MPs from across all parties and presses the government to make a quick decision on the future of the £1.3Bn tidal lagoon project.

In February 2016, the government commissioned former Conservative energy minister Charles Hendry to undertake a review, in which he called for the Swansea lagoon should be built “as soon as reasonably practicable” as a pathfinder project.

In the ‘Hendry Review’ released last month, the former energy minister said that that tidal lagoons had the potential to provide a more affordable energy security for the UK, offering a “significant economic opportunity for Wales and the UK more generally.”

Amongst the MPs adding their signature to the letter was Green Party MP Caroline Lucas, former Shadow Energy and Climate Change Secretary Lisa Nandy and former Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg.

Gloucester MP Richard Graham, chair of the All Party Group for Marine Energy & Tidal Lagoons, who wrote the letter, said: “Former energy minister Charles Hendry started his review as a sceptic and ended as an enthusiast. He was very clear in urging the government to give the green light for a pathfinder in Swansea – the world’s first ever tidal lagoon – and then see whether the experience justified going ahead with much larger future lagoons.”

Mr Graham said the project had a large number of supporters within Parliament that believe tidal lagoons meet the targets of the government’s new industrial strategy.

He said: “Clearly the business secretary and the chancellor will want to be sure the pathfinder is affordable in the context of delivering secure, domestic, low carbon and diversified sources of energy. Our letter is to urge the government not to delay in responding positively to the recommendations and getting the financial talks for the pathfinder under way.”

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