Tidal power continues its shift from a niche to mainstream renewable technology. That is becoming clear now that France announced it will offer a new round of commercial tenders targeting the northwest of the country.

Ségolène Royal, French Minister of Ecology, Sustainable Development and Energy, revealed plans to add another 50 to 100 megawatts of tidal energy by 2023. Details of the tenders for the Brittany and Normandy regions will be released later this year. France is the second-largest destination for tidal energy projects after the UK.


The news was welcomed by Rémi Gruet, Chief Executive Officer of industry group Ocean Energy Europe. ”This is a positive development for the European tidal power sector. Over the past months, tidal technologies have taken-off and developers now need areas where they can demonstrate arrays and full-scale farms. France has a world-leading tidal energy supply chain. These new tenders could leverage the experience recently gained in other parts of Europe to push tidal energy to commercialisation. These tenders are an important step to mainstreaming tidal energy in Europe.”


France is home to the world’s first tidal power plant at La Rance, which was commissioned in 1966. It was, until 2011, the largest tidal power project in the world. The power plant has 24 turbines stretched across La Rance river, producing an average of 57 MW, and a peak throughput of 240 MW. The country is also home to a number of ongoing projects being tracked by Industrial Info.

Sabella, developer of the D10, D12 and D15 tidal turbines, operates the Eussabella tidal plant off the Fromveur passage near Brittany. The Eussabella tidal power plant will have a capacity of 7 MW when fully commissioned. Sabella is also working with renewable energy company Akuo Energy on another 6 MW project in the Fromveur passage. EDF Energie Nouvelles, part of French energy giant Electricite de France S.A. (EDF) is working on the 14-MW Raz Blanchard tidal power station in Cherbourg, which will use devices from OpenHydro.

Source: Industrial Info Resources – 7 April 2017