Cornwall

Surfers' group launches report on marine energy

Campaigners in Cornwall are concerned renewable marine energy projects could negatively affect the tourism industry.

Surfers Against Sewage (SAS) said Cornwall's waves attracted tourists and surfers and must be protected.

SAS has published a report which it hopes will protect the surfing industry and give advice to planners.

Renewable UK, which promotes green energy, has urged the government not to cut marine energy funding. It said the report should help reduce conflicts.

A spokesperson said the SAS report would help developers minimise their impacts on the surfing and tourism industry.

'Balancing act'

Last year, a 12 tonne wave hub was lowered onto the seabed off Hayle.

At the time, SAS endorsed the project. The organisation has since said there needs to be a measured approach.

Hugo Tagholm, from SAS, said: "It's a balancing act. It's about siting these offshore installations in the right place and making sure they have a minimum impact on surfing waves."

Steve England, from surfing magazine Carve, said: "If you build a breakwater or wind farm in one area, it could effect somewhere 20 miles (32 km) up the coast".

But Professor Daniel Conley from the University of Plymouth said the impact from the hub was currently "non-existent" as it was waiting for wave energy companies to start to use it and generate power.

Mr Tagholm said the WAR (Waves Are Resources) report had been sent to planners and he hoped they would "consider surfers as part of their planning process".

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