EUA issues stark warning after National Grid announcement

Mike Foster, CEO of the Energy & Utilities Alliance (EUA) has spoken of his concerns that it could be harder for people to heat their homes this winter if there is a tighter margin between electricity supply and demand.

Responding to comments made by the chief executive of the National Grid, Mike said: “The man charged with responsibility for keeping the lights on yesterday issued a stark warning to the UK and to government. He forecast that the margin between electricity supply and demand would be tighter than in recent years; in other words, there was a heightened risk of blackouts, of losing supply.

“This is as serious as it gets. Ahead of the winter, policymakers have been warned [that] on top of spiralling price rises, there is now a real threat around security of supply. The energy trilemma is starting to bite.

“But it’s actually worse than this. There are some politicians calling for all gas central heating to be provided for by electricity. That’s an enormous amount of energy that the system hasn’t been designed for. We have been warned about keeping the lights on this winter, imagine the situation if we add winter heat demand to the load.

“It won’t be just lights going out, or industry told to stop production, it will mean people going cold in their homes at a scale not seen for generations. It would be the height of irresponsibility to put all of our energy eggs into the electricity basket.

“But we do need to achieve net zero. For that reason, for the majority of UK homes currently using natural gas for warmth, should keep their boilers and just have the gas switched to hydrogen. This will take place over a number of years, firstly with blending and then wholesale network conversion. We did it with the digital TV switchover and this is the way to keep people warm and the lights on.”

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