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Merseyside: Sustainable Energy Production

Volume 681: debated on Tuesday 29 September 2020

What steps he is taking to support (a) the Mersey tidal project and (b) other new jobs and environmentally sustainable energy production on Merseyside. (906773)

I reassure the hon. Lady that we are looking with great interest at the Mersey tidal project and that the Government have already funded the north-west energy hub so that we can drive huge opportunities for the region in renewable energy. I know that BEIS officials recently met representatives from the Liverpool City Region Combined Authority to discuss the very Mersey tidal project that she mentions.

Highly skilled, green manufacturing jobs should power our economic recovery beyond the pandemic and it is calculated that the Mersey tidal scheme could have the potential to generate up to four times the energy of all the wind turbines in Liverpool bay—enough energy to power 1 million homes. Liverpool city region’s Mayor has already secured £2.5 million of funding for the next phase of work. Given the Minister’s positive response, will he meet with the metro Mayor, local MPs and industry experts such as Martin Land, who now heads up the project, to help to accelerate it to feed stage development at the appropriate juncture?

I would be very happy to meet with MPs and representatives in the Mersey region. I know the Mayor, Steven Rotherham; I met him in my previous life as a DExEU Under-Secretary. I am happy to meet him and others again.