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The UK tidal lagoon – making a costly mistake?

The UK government will not support a proposed tidal lagoon project. Critics say it is a missed opportunity, but Westminster is clear it will not fund the project The UK government will not support a proposed tidal lagoon project. Critics say it is a missed opportunity, but Westminster is clear it will not fund the project.
By Catriona Scott 3 July 2018 0 31515
Artist’s impression of the wall of the tidal lagoon at Swansea Bay While the initial cost of the Swansea Bay tidal lagoon project looked high, critics have accused the government of short-termism. (Tidal Lagoon Power)

UK Business and Energy Secretary Greg Clark announced on 25 June that the government would not support the proposed Swansea Bay tidal lagoon project in Wales. The decision was expected – and was met with immediate criticism.

The government’s main reason for rejecting the proposal was cost. Clark said the project, which would have eventually comprised six tidal lagoons, did not meet the government’s criteria on value for money. But has the UK walked away from a costly risk or a ground-breaking opportunity to expand the...