Stuart Murphy, founder of renewables project TPGen24, proposes an untapped resource that could help affirm construction’s sustainable credentials

Stuart Murphy

The largest barrier to a low carbon society exists within its foundations, specifically the renewable energy network and its output capacity. It is nowhere near capable of meeting our ambitions, nor is our planned trajectory going to get us to net zero any time soon.

Consumption will continue to rise, and limiting it is political suicide. So we fall back on fossil fuels or expensive, hazardous alternatives such as nuclear.

With no planet B to fall back on, we need low-emission innovations which make our lives greener and easier, so let’s concentrate on what will deliver it: a secure, robust and high-capacity renewable energy infrastructure.

Our renewables network struggles to keep pace with demand because of its operational intermittency. Both wind and solar require optimal weather conditions; they become redundant when the wind does not blow and the sun does not shine. 

Tidal energy provides a realistic, scalable alternative which can enhance the current mix – and construction can help by establishing the infrastructure to deliver it.

Tidal is a vibrant sector with exciting technologies coming online to realise the potential for this woefully untapped resource. Our own TPGen24 has the ability to generate base load electricity 24/7, 365 days a year, putting an end to intermittency forever.

What should make this particularly attractive to contractors is tidal infrastructure’s potential to deliver a green society while reaping the financial, employment and investment opportunities such large-scale projects bring. This would have the dual effect of affirming construction’s sustainable credentials while generating valuable, responsibly sourced income to fund future low-carbon ambitions.

Stuart Murphy, founder of renewables project TPGen24

Ideas for positive change


This is part of our Countdown to Cop26 coverage in the lead up to the world climate conference in Glasgow in November. We will be publishing more big ideas about ways to tackle the climate emergency over the coming weeks and you can find more here.

Do please send us your own thoughts about how to make construction greener! Email us, using the subject line “Cop26 ideas”, at