Wind energy embraces marine power

What was formerly the BWEA, the British Wind Energy Association, has just reinvented itself as renewable UK, saying that together, wind, wave and tidal power can supply over 30% of our electricity by 2020, resulting in over £60billion of investment in UK plc and the creating of 60,000 UK jobs.

Marketing manager Simon Becker explained that this did not mean that the organisation was turning away from wind, but reflected a move to embrace wave and tidal power as well, which started five years ago. The organisation has recently published, Marine Renewable Energy – State of the industry report, which observes that at the end of January 2010, the UK has 0.85MW of wave energy and 1.55MW of tidal stream installed. It notes that there are 77.5MW of commercial scale marine energy projects currently being developed in UK waters, of which 27MW has already obtained planning consent. A Manifesto – 2010 also recently published, suggests that the UK government takes a pro-active lead in identifying and selecting the lead candidate regions and ports to become manufacturing and research clusters for offshore wind and other marine renewables. It also asks for, 'a realistic feed-in tariff,' the maintenance of the Renewable Obligation mechanism, the retention of regional planning structures, and the reform of Ofgem's remit to make its primary duty the facilitation of the Government's policy objectives, including tackling climate change at a minimal cost.