Eluned recently accompanied local Parliamentary Candidate, Graham Hogg and Dwyfor Merionnydd Labour Members on a visit to the fascinating hydroelectric power station at Maentwrog, where we toured the facilities and heard how hydropower represents 4 per cent of all renewable electricity generation in Wales.
The station was built by Sir Alexander Gibb and Partners for the North Wales Power Company and opened in 1928.
Fed with water via the two-mile-long pipeline from Maentwrog Dam at Llyn Trawsfynydd, it was originally equipped with three turbines, with a combined output of 18 MW – which, at the time more than sufficient to meet the electricity needs of North Wales. An additional turbine was installed in 1934 and in 1991 the power station was re-equipped bringing its output capacity up to 30 MW.
Construction of the sites were incredible feats of pioneering 20th century engineering, which, for Maentwrog, included the formation of the second largest man-made lake in Wales with the construction of its 4 concrete dams.
Hydropower a well-established renewable technology providing a predictable source of energy, generating over 300 GWh annually.
Renewable energy is a key part of the Welsh Labour Government’s vision for a more sustainable future and have made encouraging progress – capacity has increased over 47 per cent since 2014 and makes up 18 per cent of all electricity generation in Wales.
Welsh Labour believes that by using our abundant natural resources in a sustainable way, we can ensure energy continues its important role in achieving our energy and decarbonisation targets.
Our key priority remains to deliver a prosperous and secure low carbon Wales.