‘Another kick in the teeth for Wales’ as UK Government pulls the plug on plans for the Swansea Bay Tidal Lagoon

Swansea Tidal Lagoon

The Swansea Bay Tidal Lagoon is dead in the water, with the UK Government due to announce next week that the project will not be going ahead.

According to the Financial Times, Ministers are planning to reject a £1.3bn project to build the tidal power lagoon in Swansea Bay.

Reacting to the news, First Minister Carwyn Jones said that “for the UK government, Wales is just not important”.

He described it as “another kick in the teeth” for the people of Wales, not long after the government “reneged” on the electrification of the train line west of Cardiff.

The Financial Times said the decision was taken two weeks ago but that ministers had been “discussing ways to mitigate the political impact”.

As a result, the announcement is expected to be made on the same day that the government announces the go-ahead for the new Wylfa power station, also in Wales.

One senior government figure, asked what the chances were of the project getting the go-ahead, told the newspaper that there was a “cat’s chance in hell”.

Subsidy

The move comes just two months after the Welsh Conservatives urged the UK Government to give the scheme the go ahead.

Their economy spokesman Russell George, said it was important in order to boost economic regeneration in the south-west.

The proposal by Tidal Lagoon Power, which has the provisional financial backing of £200m from financial institutions led by Prudential, and reportedly had a similar amount of support from the Welsh Government.

The UK Government said it was concerned at the level of subsidy that the Tidal Lagoon would demand from British taxpayers.

“Any decision on the Swansea Bay tidal lagoon project will have to represent value for money for the UK taxpayer as well as the consumer,” they said.


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