The tidal energy industry in North Wales has today received a major boost following a Welsh Government investment of £12.6 million EU funds in Anglesey-based developer, Minesto.
The funding will support the next phase of the company’s ground-breaking project which involves underwater kites generating energy from tidal and ocean currents.
Over the coming years, Minesto will develop, install and operate a second-generation device with enhanced capacity in the Holyhead Deep site, which is located 6km off the coast of Anglesey.
The project is part of a longer-term plan to expand the Holyhead Deep site into an 80 megawatt commercial tidal energy array with the potential to generate enough energy to power some 60,000 homes.
Counsel General and Brexit Minister, Jeremy Miles, responsible for overseeing European funds in Wales, said:
“Generating energy from renewable sources is not only vital in creating a low-carbon economy and contributing to the global challenge of climate change, it also provides Wales with a real opportunity to be at the forefront of a major emerging industry.
“This investment highlights the importance of securing replacement funding from the UK Government to support growth and jobs in Wales following our exit from the EU.”
Economy Minister and Minister for North Wales, Ken Skates said:
“This significant investment will take Minesto’s operation to the next level, supporting the expansion of the company’s manufacturing and assembly capacity at its North Wales base. It’s good news for jobs in the area, as well as a big boost to the local supply chain.”
Minesto set up its UK headquarters in Anglesey in 2015 following Welsh Government support and has recently completed successful testing of the underwater ‘kite’ technology it has constructed and installed in North Wales.
Dr Martin Edlund, Chief Executive of Minesto, said:
“This is a key contribution to the commercialisation of our technology and a strong sign of commitment from the Welsh Government.
“We are pleased to see that we share an agenda to industrialise tidal energy in Wales, to enable large-scale local clean energy production from Welsh tidal streams. By doing so we will enable long-term industrial development in North Wales.”
In the last decade, EU-funded projects in Wales have created more than 48,000 jobs and 13,000 new businesses, while helping 86,000 people back into work.