Last updated 13:17, Thursday, 16 July 2009 source: nw evening mail
CUMBRIA’S Energy Coast project is being singled out for government praise.
The Low Carbon Industrial Strategy – published by the Department for Business Innovation and Skills yesterday – pledged a funding package of up to £180m to support developments in wave and tidal technology and support for Britain’s off-shore wind industry and nuclear supply chain.
The white paper on energy illustrates how the government aims to ensure that the transition to a low carbon economy will create jobs and business savings in Britain.
Cumbria has launched a 20-year plan to create thousands of jobs and develop a mix of new power, from nuclear new build to offshore wind, tidal energy and biomass.
The plan is being spearheaded by West Lakes Renaissance and Cumbria Vision and backed by a range of other organisations,
The government’s latest strategy document makes a special mention of Cumbria, among other areas of the country, for leading the way.
It said: “The low carbon agenda is already being embraced across Britain. There are many cases where enterprising businesses and the public sector are producing impressive results. Cumbria is actively promoting its ‘energy coast’.”
Cumbria Vision strategy director Simon Sjenitzer said: “It is great that the government has recognised Cumbria’s role as a market leader in Britain’s green industrial revolution. Like the government, our top priority is to ensure local businesses and local people benefit from this work.”
He said the county would be bidding for new government money to help develop renewable energy like wave and tidal energy.
Mr Sjenitzer said: “Funding to develop wave and tidal will be a high priority – a form of energy production not yet here, but with massive potential given the county’s tidal ranges and miles of coastline.”
Stuart Klosinski, industrial development manager for Furness Enterprise, which is promoting the Barrow area as the Gateway to the Energy Coast, said: “We are delighted Cumbria was recognised as contributing towards the development of the low carbon economy. Barrow and Furness are at the forefront of that with the development of LED (solid state lighting) technology which can potentially reduce the cost of energy by its use, particularly in relation to lighting.”
He said Barrow was also a gateway for Sellafield through its port, and could contribute to a revived nuclear industry through BAE shipyard’s nuclear expertise.