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Council Leader tackles myths about the Swansea Bay Tidal Lagoon

There are no excuses for the UK Government not to green-light the Swansea Bay Tidal Lagoon, the leader of the city's council said today.

Tidal lagoon

Cllr Rob Stewart said people across Wales and beyond are increasingly frustrated that the £1.3 billion privately funded project is still waiting on a decision from Westminster.

He said there were several myths surrounding the lagoon and fears ministers may try to use them for not proceeding.

Mr Stewart said: "It will soon be nine months since former energy minister Charles Hendry published his independent report which concluded that this vitally important project would be a 'no regrets' option.

"Yet the UK Government is still to respond to his findings and I think most people across South Wales are at a loss as to explain why.

"This is a privately funded development and investors have warned it risks stalling unless a green light is given soon.

"Ministers must now act now, although I am increasingly fearful that they will look for an excuse to drag this out still further."

Five questions about the Swansea Bay Tidal Lagoon and the answers

The cost of the electricity produced by the Tidal Lagoon will be too expensive?

The Government's own independent review clearly stated that Swansea Bay Tidal Lagoon is affordable, stating that the cost of Swansea Bay Tidal Lagoon to households is 30p a year ('less than a pint of milk') if looked at over a 30-year horizon, 18p a year if looked at over a 60-year horizon.  Whichever, it's a negligible amount to ask households to pay to start a new industry with such great promise.

It's too risky as the technology is untested?

We've been harnessing the power of the tides for centuries with tidal mills. This is proven technology being deployed by world leaders in their field. There are no new component parts.

The actual number of jobs created will not be that many?

Swansea Bay Tidal Lagoon will create in excess of 2,200 much-needed construction jobs but the really exciting bit is the economic benefit and job creation that will come from a fleet of lagoons. Swansea Bay is where this new industry begins and it is us that will reap the rewards of this £40 billion investment that will create some 71,000 jobs and new manufacturing facilities here in Wales.

Figures on the minimal impact it will have on fish are "overconfident"?

The developer assures us that their data is accurate but in any event, it is the job of Natural Resources Wales to determine the marine licence.

The electricity it will generate is minimal in the big scheme of things?

This country needs to find new sources of reliable power. Swansea Bay Tidal Lagoon is a pathfinder project that will supply enough power for 155,000 homes and lead to the development of full scale lagoons that can be built quickly in nuclear sized projects. What's more, this is zero carbon power that will last for 120 years.


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