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Tidal lagoon environmental interactions: regulator perspective, solution options and industry challenges

Tidal lagoon environmental interactions: regulator perspective, solution options and industry challenges

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Tidal range energy is an attractive renewable energy option, particularly in areas of high tidal range, such as the UK. Historically one of the main barriers to tidal range developments in the UK, specifically tidal barrages, has been regulatory environmental concerns and uncertainty surrounding environmental impacts. Tidal lagoons are often suggested as a means of reducing the environmental impact of barrage options. Recent developments in the lagoon sector mean it is now more important than ever to further consider the environmental impacts arising from tidal lagoons and the potential constraints these impacts may pose to the industry's future growth. Environmental impacts and their interactions are complex, often making them difficult to understand and manage. Here, the authors develop a conceptual framework to categorise impacts, present results from consultation with regulatory and policy organisations and discuss potential impact and enhancement solution options. This study includes a number of case studies to present lessons learnt, opportunities, cautions and successful implementation of past solutions. In the absence of operational tidal lagoons, these case studies are based on barrages and other relevant developments.

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