In a significant move aimed at boosting the marine energy sector, Marine Energy Wales and Morlais have joined forces, signing a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to enhance their collaborative efforts.
Marine Energy Wales, an initiative that supports the growth of the marine renewable energy sector in Wales and manager of the £2.7 million Marine Energy Test Area (META) project, and Morlais, the 240MW consented tidal stream energy project off the coast of Anglesey , have joined forces to put Wales at the heart of a fast-growing global marine energy sector.
Their common interest in the development of marine renewable energy resources and industrial capability, specifically tidal stream energy in Welsh waters, is the driving force behind this collaboration. The partnership aims to address common challenges, encourage business and research collaboration, as well as exchange knowledge and best practices, further positioning Wales at the forefront of the international marine energy industry.
Tom Hill, Programme Manager at Marine Energy Wales commented:
“Morlais is a nationally important project that will enable crucial development of tidal stream technology and get marine renewable electricity flowing into the Welsh grid. Marine Energy Wales are proud to support the project, and signing this memorandum of understanding today will allow us to share everything we have learned setting up META (Marine Energy Test Area) and solidify the Welsh test centre network for developing innovation through to commercialisation.”
Key areas of collaboration include promoting capability and skills development, addressing key issues in port infrastructure, grid investment and funding, and fostering closer ties with regional stakeholders. Both parties will also explore ways to utilise energy resources in the regions, streamline planning processes, and attract inward investment.
A host of deliverables have been agreed upon, including providing Morlais with contractual support and workshops from META, signposting to META facility for technologies unready for deployment at Morlais, sharing environmental monitoring information, and promoting each other on their respective digital channels.
Gerallt Llewelyn Jones, Senior Responsible Officer at Morlais said:
“In combining our strengths and expertise, Marine Energy Wales and Morlais are forging a strong alliance to drive the marine energy sector forward. The partnership reinforces our commitment to sustainable development but also positions Wales as leader in marine renewables. Together, we can work to overcome the challenges and create opportunities which will not only benefit Welsh communities but also help mitigate climate change.”
With work on landfall infrastructure and cabling now nearing completion, the first devices under the Morlais project are set to be deployed in 2026.