THE first ever tidal power conference will be hosted in West Somerset tomorrow (April 16).

More than 20 local authorities and organisations around the Bristol Channel cost will take part.

The conference comes at a time when a tidal power lagoon is being considered in Swansea Bay to exploit the natural power potential of the Bristol Channel.

Cllr Tim Taylor, leader of West Somerset Council said: “It’s clear that we need to consider renewable methods of energy production to counteract the release of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere which has a major impact on global warming.

“Tidal power is one of these renewable energy sources and the Bristol Channel, with its high tidal range and fast tidal flow, will provide prime sites for such tidal energy production.

“Therefore it’s right and proper that local authorities and other agencies, who could potentially be involved, come together to discuss the benefits and potential dangers of exploiting the huge energy potential of the Bristol Channel.”

Local authorities from South Wales and coastal councils in Somerset, Devon and the Exmoor National Park Authority are among those invited.

Representatives from Swansea Bay Tidal Lagoon Power, Long Bay Sea Power and other engineering and construction experts are due to attend.

The programme for the day will look at a range of issues and West Somerset Council will share its experience of national energy infrastructure projects.

Cllr Taylor added: “I am delighted West Somerset Council is able to host such an important conference.

“This is an excellent opportunity for authorities along the Bristol Channel to come together, with experts to look at the potential for tidal power.”