Interreg France (Channel) England Programme has approved the biggest ever Interreg project that will prove to be game-changing for the European tidal stream energy sector.
The Tidal Stream Industry Energiser Project, known as TIGER, is an ambitious €45.4m project, of which €29.9m (66%) comes from the European Regional Development Fund via the Interreg France (Channel) England Programme.
TIGER falls within the funding category for low carbon technologies of the Programme, whose Managing Authority is Norfolk County Council and which co-funds collaborative projects between organisations in the south of the UK and north of France.
The TIGER project will build cross-border partnerships to develop new technologies, test and demonstrate them at a number of locations around the Channel region, and use the learning from this development to make a stronger, cost-effective case for tidal energy as part of the France/UK energy mix.
The project aims to deliver new designs for improved performance and lower cost turbines, as well as associated infrastructure and ancillary equipment.
The TIGER project was launched in October 2019 and will be completed in 2023.
The TIGER project will demonstrate that tidal stream energy (TSE) is a maturing industry, capable of achieving an accelerated cost reduction pathway.
The project will position the Channel region at the heart of the sector by:
- addressing technology challenges;
- building supply chain;
- switching on new sites; and
- installing new turbines.
The project aims to drive the growth of tidal stream energy by installing up to 8 MW of new tidal capacity at sites in and around the Channel region thus driving innovation and the development of new products and services.
Essentially, turbines submerged off the coast will harness the energy of tidal currents that will be converted into electricity.
TIGER will make a stronger, more cost-effective case for tidal stream to become part of the energy mix in the UK and France by harnessing economies of scale via volume manufacturing and multi-device deployments. Coastal communities used as ports of deployment will benefit from knock-on investment and job creation.
The total theoretical tidal energy capacity in the Channel region is nearly 4 GW, enough to power up to three million homes. Proving that tidal energy generation can be cost-effective on a large scale could open the door for it to become the renewable energy of choice in coastal locations with strong tidal currents globally, helping the growth of clean, green energy generation and tackling the climate emergency.
The project will install up to 8 MW of additional energy capacity, ultimately leading to:
- a reduction of greenhouse gas emissions of ~11,000 tonnes per annum;
- investment in coastal communities, leading to an economic increase in GVA of €13 million per annum; and
- a tidal energy cost reduction towards €150/MWh.
About Interreg VA France (Channel) England Programme
The Interreg VA France (Channel) England Programme is an EU programme that funds projects that benefit the Channel area in the south of the UK and north of France, using European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) funding. The programme awards funding to projects whose partners work together for solutions to shared challenges in the Channel area.
The programme aim is to increase the development and uptake of existing or new low-carbon technologies in sectors that have the highest potential for a reduction in greenhouse gas emissions.
Tidal demonstration sites
TIGER will support demonstrations at the following tidal sites:
|Site||Key partner||Location||Current status||Capacity to be installed||Technology to be installed||Timescale for deployment|
|Ramsey Sound||Cambrian Offshore||Pembrokeshire, UK||Fully developed tidal demo site with 5MW ROCs||Up to 1MW of new turbine capacity||TBC||2021|
|Paimpol-Bréhat||EDF and SEENEOH||Brittany, FR||Test site to be repurposed||100kW of capacity||Minesto (x1 turbine)||2021|
|Le Raz Blanchard||Normandie Hydroliennes||Normandy, FR||Existing site under development||Consenting and techno-economic studies only||Atlantis / Hydroquest (up to 5MW deployment planned following consenting)||Deployment outside of scope of TIGER|
|Morbihan||Morbihan Hydro Energies SASU and Sabella||Brittany, FR||New site to be consented||500kW in project||Sabella turbines (2x D08 250kW)||2022|
|PTEC (TBC)||QED Naval||Isle of Wight, UK||Consented, dormant||Up to 5MW||Subhub and turbines (TBC)||2022|
|2.8 to 7.8 MW|
TIGER is actively engaging with other relevant projects that have a tangible synergy with tidal stream energy, including:
- the Salmonid Management Round the Channel (SAMARCH) project, which has the potential to monitor specific species at certain TIGER tidal sites; and
- the Selkie Project, which is developing a streamlined commercialisation pathway for the Marine Renewable Energy (MRE) industry, with links to the Ramsey Sound TIGER tidal site.