Geraint Davies Labour & Cooperative MP for Swansea West has spoken up in Parliament to acknowledge that Swansea Lagoon has improved its offer to Swansea in response to his concerns but there are still answers and assurances needed to ensure we get the best outcome.
Speaking in this week’s Energy debate Geraint Davies MP said
“My position on the Swansea Lagoon debate has been to ensure we move forward with caution so that we don’t take risks with our environment whilst getting the best economic results for Swansea.
“I’m a supporter of tidal lagoons and my key concerns have been around raw sewerage being pumped into the Swansea Lagoon, the excavation of toxic waste and the loss of sand on our Gower beaches. In addition, it is important that the Lagoon improves the tourism economy for Swansea given the significant impact the Lagoon will have on our iconic view.
“Swansea Tidal Lagoon have changed their plans to try to positively respond to the concerns I have raised in the public interest.
“My concern that having a sewerage outlet pumped into the Lagoon would be unacceptable has been echoed by Welsh Water and now a pipe extension is being positively considered which I welcome.
“Swansea Lagoon has responded to my concern that the proposed 8 tonne rock armour would not cope with wave conditions so 12 tonne concrete blocks would be needed by saying they have bought a quarry with denser heavier stone that granite to provide the rock armour.
“Ultimately we still have a green power station six times the size of Cardiff Bay in Swansea Bay to provide the UK grid not Swansea households. Therefore we need assurances it will help not hinder our tourism economy.
“I accept and welcome the fact that Swansea Tidal Lagoon has improved its tourism proposals by including a visitor centre. Discussions around the berthing of cruise liners are of particular interest to me if we are to take advantage of our Dylan Thomas and City of Culture ambitions to help to position Swansea as a quality tourist destination of the future.
“I remain concerned about sand movements and the possible muddying of the Swansea beach by turbines propelling sediment towards the beach in front of the 360 degree café and Swansea University. Also its important that the views of the Lagoon as depicted are accurate.
“The issues around excavation of toxic waste and contamination need further investigation by Natural Resources Wales and independent experts. If this is given the all clear we still need to be sure our beaches remain sandy and attractive.
“Finally, we need to know the carbon impact of the Lagoon’s construction and how it will effect retail and business both in the construction phase and afterwards.
“Overall, I am pleased that my concerns have been taken on board and whilst there are still key questions to answer I accept that the jury is out and will support its verdict. It’s my job to raise issues in the public interest and if the Lagoon goes ahead I’ll do all I can to support its success.”