Severn barrage would be carbon neutral in six months
by David Masters
March 5, 2009
A proposed barrage across the Severn estuary, to harness the huge tidal energy of the river, could claim carbon neutrality in less than six months, according to a new report.
A CIWEM study found that the environmental cost of construction would be covered by the carbon emissions saved by the 16km barrage within the first half year of operation.
If the proposal gets the go ahead it would be the largest renewables generator in the UK, providing 5% of the country’s electricity needs.
This is a quarter of the government’s renewable energy target for 2020, and equivalent to all the renewable energy projects currently operating in the UK.
Constructing the barrage would take nine years to complete, although energy generation could begin as soon as the river is closed.
Compared with construction costs, operation expenses throughout the barrage’s 120-year lifespan are expected to be nominal.
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