At Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy Questions on Tuesday 12 June, I had the opportunity to ask the government why they continue to drag their feet over a decision on whether to support the Swansea Bay Tidal Lagoon project.
One of my major interests in Parliament is exploring what investment and infrastructure we need to clean up our energy supply in the UK - to ensure homes are powered by green, renewable and sustainable energy sources, rather than polluting carbon fuels.
I recently met with the team who are leading on the Swansea bay project. In addition to hearing about the jobs and benefits this project would bring to South Wales, I learned about the huge opportunities for jobs and businesses across the South West of England and in Bristol that the project would create too.
But this project cannot get off the ground while the government remain on the fence and refuse to commit to invest in the project. That they won't support such a landmark clean energy project outright is frustrating enough, but the continued silence on the matter is creating unacceptable uncertainty and means we're falling behind in the global race to create new renewable energy infrastructure.
And at a time when we should be leading the way in delivering clean energy, that delayed decision becomes ever more irresponsible. I'll continue to push the government to invest in key infrastructure like the Swansea Bay Tidal Lagoon, and ensure that the expertise and talent in Bristol to meet our future clean energy needs is harnessed.
Will the Secretary of State please think of the 150,000 homes that it would power, the thousands of jobs that it would create, the supply chain business that it would support in Wales and the west, and the climate change that it would tackle, and get off the fence and announce Government support for Swansea bay tidal lagoon today?
Claire Perry (Minister for Energy and Clean Growth)
Of course, the whole House will shortly be able to pass the price cap Bill, which will assist all consumers with the cost of energy, and this comes on top of the prepayment meter and vulnerable consumers price caps that are in place. We are determined to continue supporting vulnerable consumers through such things as the warm home discount, winter fuel payments and through repurposing the very large energy company obligation scheme to tackle fuel poverty.