Britain will be able to keep its lights on and homes warm through the winter even if imports of European electricity and gas come to a halt, according to National Grid. The energy system operator said the UK’s first winter outside of the European Union would pose no extra challenges to securing the UK’s gas and power supply. Brexit is not expected to completely disrupt UK-Europe energy trading, but even if no imports are possible from continental Europe the UK will have more gas and electricity than it needs. But National Grid’s annual winter forecast revealed that weaning the UK off European imports would come at a price to energy bill payers. The system operator said it expects the wholesale price of electricity to be higher in the UK market than in Europe this winter, so importing less electricity via mega-cables to France, the Netherlands and Belgium would lead to higher prices overall. The UK will be more exposed to steep gas price hikes on global energy market costs if it needs to compete with energy-hungry Asian countries for regular shipments of liquified natural gas (LNG). Jonathan Marshall, head of analysis at the Energy and Climate Intelligence Unit, said: “Action on cutting energy waste at home has slowed, while the approval of more gas-fired power stations would drag the UK further off track.” He added: “With British gas reserves dwindling, now would be the time to crack on with reducing reliance on fossil fuels in general, bringing in a cleaner, cheaper future.”
Guardian 10th Oct 2019 read more »
National Grid warns of gas supply risk in event of no-deal Brexit. UK could turn to LNG market to top up supplies.
FT 10th Oct 2019 read more »