Atlantis submits proposal for France’s Le Raz Blanchard
Atlantis study concludes 2GW of tidal energy is immediately available to be harnessed in the Raz Blanchard, Normandy and 1GW could be operational by 2025 with potential to create up to 10,000 jobs and attract more than €3 billion of CAPEX investment.
Atlantis, a global leader in the marine power generation sector, has submitted a strategic plan to the French government setting out plans to deliver 1GW of tidal power by 2025 at Le Raz Blanchard which will drive the reduction of Levelized Cost Of Energy (“LCOE”) for tidal energy lower than any offshore wind farm currently under construction in France or in the UK when the final phase of the proposed 1GW project is commissioned. If implemented, Atlantis believes this would be the largest tidal power project in existence. The study also concluded that Le Raz Blanchard has one of the best tidal energy resources in the world and after the construction of the first 1GW the site could be quickly expanded to 2GW by 2027.
The plan concludes that the construction of a 2GW project in Le Raz Blanchard would attract €3.3bn of investment and open up an export market worth an estimated €400m in turbine sales each year and with potential to create 10,000 jobs.
France is actively involved in developing tidal stream experimentation sites and pilot projects in preparation of tidal commercial rounds recently announced by Environment secretary of state Sebastien Lecornu. Atlantis is actively pursuing an opportunity to develop a reference site in Normandy coast and is seeking the assistance of the French Government to allow investments to be made in Normandie local region’s supply chain and maritime infrastructure. Atlantis’ plans for the French territorial waters will require the development a strong local supply chain to fabricate turbine and perform the offshore construction activities. In addition to potentially attracting over €3b in CAPEX investment, the Atlantis proposal includes the development of a dedicated, state of the art turbine assembly, testing and operations and maintenance facility in Normandy upon award of commercial tenders for large scale arrays. Discussions with French government and Normandy officials have taken place to discuss the industrial plan.
Studies commissioned by the French Government are currently underway to assess tidal power’s best sites in the French maritime waters ahead of commercial tenders. Conclusions from Maritime Prefectures are expected in June this year and Syndicat des Energies Renouvelables has been central in these works.
The independent proposal compiled by Atlantis intends to build on the success of the MeyGen project in Scotland where more than 6GW of predictable renewable power has been generated and in March 2018, a new world record for monthly production from a tidal stream array was set with 1,400MWh exported to grid.
Atlantis CEO, Tim Cornelius commented: “France is sitting on a low cost renewable energy gold mine at Raz Blanchard. Now that the tidal steam industry has been through the R&D phase and is now entering full scale commercialisation, France should be at the forefront of exploiting this environmentally benign, predictable and inexhaustible source of renewable energy. Our proposal, if implemented, could quickly create a new industry in France attracting investment in local companies to establish a supply chain capable of delivering more than 1,000, 1.9MW tidal turbines along with their associated foundations and the onshore infrastructure. With the support of the French Government, we can provide energy security, job creation, economic stimulation for the Normandy and Brittany regions along with the opportunity to lead Europe in the field of marine energy generation.”