Wales politics

Swansea tidal lagoon 'in danger of not happening'

Tidal lagoon Image copyright TLP
Image caption The project would produce energy for 14 out of every 24 hours, the company says

Swansea's planned £1.3bn tidal lagoon project is "in danger of not happening", an MP has warned.

Tonia Antoniazzi said more than £200m of investor funding was currently only available until Christmas, calling on UK ministers to back the scheme.

The Gower MP said some of the company's staff were working a four-day week.

The government has said it needs time to assess the lagoon's merits but investors have warned it risks stalling unless a green light is given soon.

Ms Antoniazzi was speaking at a Westminster Hall debate about the Queen's Speech and Wales.

"Recent reports have stated the tidal lagoon is in the most precarious position since its inception," she said.

"It is in danger of not happening. Funding is available until Christmas, what's going to happen then?"

Image caption Tonia Antoniazzi says ministers need to provide answers on the project

Ms Antoniazzi said more than £200m had been "provisionally committed" by investors "ready to raise hundreds of millions more to fund the project".

"David Stevens, the founder of Admiral Insurance, has recently said if there's no evidence that the government is committed at some point the patience of investors will be exhausted and he is right," she told MPs.

"So Swansea tidal lagoon investors have now reportedly decided to delay their investment - we have to have the go ahead.

"It's reported staff have been asked to cut back to four days working week and unless the government acts, in the words of Stevens, an opportunity will have been lost and it will be very hard to piece together the future of my constituency."

UK ministers have said they are considering the recommendations of a review by former energy minister Charles Hendry, which backed the plan.

Last week a spokesman said: "We will require time to assess the merits of such a programme and determine what is in the best interest of the UK energy consumer and taxpayer in the long term and will publish its response to the Hendry Review in due course."

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