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Plans proposed for 1 GW tidal project in France

Plans have been submitted to the French Government for a 1 GW tidal array. A study carried out in the Raz Blanchard strait considered it to be one of the best tidal energy resources in the world.

Atlantis Resources has submitted a plan to the French Government to build 1 GW of tidal power in the Raz Blanchard off the coast of Normandy by 2025.

The Singapore-based developer of commercial scale tidal power projects carried out a study, which showed that 2 GW of tidal energy could be harnessed in the Raz Blanchard, a strait that runs between Alderney, the northernmost of the Channel Islands, and Cap de la Hague, a cape at the northwestern tip of the Cotentin peninsula in Normandy. The study considers the site to be one of the best tidal energy resources in the world. The development of the first 1 GW could by increased to up to 2 GW as soon as 2027, it said.

According to Atlantis, the construction of a 2 GW project in Le Raz Blanchard would attract €3.3 billion of investment and open up an export market worth an estimated €400 million each year as well as create up to 10 000 jobs. The marine power developer is actively pursuing an opportunity to develop a reference site in Normandy and is seeking the assistance of the French Government to allow investments to be made in the region’s local supply chain and maritime infrastructure.

Atlantis’ plans for the French territorial waters will require the development of a strong local supply chain to manufacture the turbines and perform the offshore construction activities. The Atlantis proposal includes the development of a dedicated turbine assembly, testing and operations and maintenance facility in Normandy upon award of commercial tenders for large scale arrays.

The construction of a 2 GW project in Le Raz Blanchard would attract €3.3 billion of investment and open up an export market worth an estimated €400 million each year as well as create up to 10 000 jobs.

Studies commissioned by the French Government are currently underway to assess the best tidal power sites in French maritime waters ahead of the launch of commercial tenders.

Atlantis said that its proposed tidal project would allow for a significant reduction in the levelized cost of energy for tidal energy compared with the cost of offshore wind farms currently under construction in France or in the UK, once the proposed 1 GW project is fully commissioned.

This April, Atlantis Resources announced the completion of Phase 1A of the 398 MW MeyGen tidal power project in Pentland Firth, between mainland Scotland and the island of Orkney. The firm said that the 6 MW Phase 1A, comprising four 1.5 MW turbines, is the world’s largest tidal stream array. The MeyGen project is being developed in phases with Phase 1A acting as a pilot to the development of the remaining consented 86 MW project.

The MeyGen project’s next phase, MeyGen Phase 1B, involves installation of an additional four 1.5 MW turbines, while MeyGen Phase 1C will involve the development of an additional 49 turbines with a combined capacity of 73.5 MW. The second and third phases of MeyGen will eventually see the project’s capacity increased to 398 MW.

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