The government is reportedly mulling plans to construct a huge tidal energy array in the Severn Estuary as part of a wider drive to boost infrastructure investment.
Prime minister David Cameron held a recent meeting with Labour MP and former shadow Welsh secretary Peter Hain to discuss the proposals, which supporters say could provide up to five per cent of UK energy and lead to significant job creation.
“It was a more productive meeting than might have been expected. It's encouraging that Number 10 are taking the barrage much more seriously than has been the case over the last few years,” Mr Hain told BBC Wales. “Government support is an absolute pre-requisite for getting the whole project underway.”
Mr Hain insisted that no public money would be required for the £30bn project, with Kuwait and Qatar thought to be interested in providing funding. However, opponents of the scheme say local wildlife would be drastically affected by the development if it goes ahead.
Last week, a working panel of Lords raised concerns about the government’s draft Energy Bill, expressing particular concerns about the introduction of contracts for difference feed-in tariffs.