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Tidal range electricity generation: A comparison between estuarine barrages and coastal lagoons

Research output: Contribution to Journal/MagazineJournal articlepeer-review

Article numbere11381
<mark>Journal publication date</mark>30/11/2022
Issue number11
Number of pages11
Publication StatusPublished
Early online date4/11/22
<mark>Original language</mark>English


The potential power from coastal tidal range is becoming better appreciated due to the need to mitigate global warming. Great Britain (GB) is ideally situated to exploit tidal power but currently has no operational systems. Historically, estuaries have been proposed as sites for barrages, but more recently coastal lagoons are favoured due to a lower environment impact. To contrast the differences between barrages and lagoons two potential schemes are analysed using the Lancaster 0-D Tidal Range Model. Both schemes were analysed with a range of turbine numbers and generator ratings. The schemes are compared in terms of energy generation, flood protection, navigation, and selected environmental impacts. The analysis indicates that the schemes are not categorically different, characterised by the shape and alignment of the impoundment. Barrages impoundments across estuaries are generally shorter than lagoons impounding similar volumes, with lower civil engineering costs. Whilst estuaries tend to have slightly higher tidal ranges, they also create unique ecological conditions with diverse natural ecosystems that are increasingly valued. The analysis shows that 2-way generation and pumping can match the full tidal range and help preserve inter-tidal areas.