Friday, 22 February, 2019

National Grid withdraws gas alert but prices stay sky high

Britain Freezes As Siberian Weather Sweeps Across The Country The Beast from the East has ravaged the UK
Nellie Chapman | 03 March, 2018, 04:46

"Market prices are high, reflecting the supply and demand position".

Expert analyst Simon Wood from S&P Global Platts said: "It is highly likely that National Grid will have to interrupt supply to industrial consumers as it struggles to balance the system as United Kingdom flexibility remains limited and the Continental temperatures are set to remain well below normal into the weekend".

Other factors include curbs on production at a Dutch gas field experiencing earthquakes and high gas prices in Asia which have seen LNG tankers heading east instead, Energy and Climate Intelligence Unit (ECIU) analyst Dr Jonathan Marshall said.

Although Britain's gas system opened largely balanced with a shortfall of just 4.4 million cubic metres (mcm) per day, National Grid data showed, the shortfall later widened to 12.4 mcm, triggering fresh concerns over supply.

Energy Minister Claire Perry has told people to carry on - and cook their dinner tonight, the Mirror reports.

'We are in communication with industry partners and are closely monitoring the situation'.

A National Grid spokesperson said: "The market has continued to respond over the last 24 hours and we have seen an increase of supplies into the network".

The shortage is likely to hit industrial consumers rather than households if more supply can not be found today.

Solutions include district heating, "green" or renewable gas injection into the grid, air source heat pumps and use of hydrogen, but they all have technical hurdles or would involve major disruption.

It said in a statement: 'National gas demand today is high and due to the extreme weather conditions, there have been gas supply losses overnight.

He said: "Normally it will take much longer than a week or two weeks of cold weather to push prices up, so we're not expecting that".

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It will then notify your current supplier and begin the switch.

With the Rough storage site now closed, United Kingdom storage stocks are at their lowest on record for the beginning of March.

Meanwhile previous year British Gas owner Centrica closed the UK's largest storage plant, sparking fears the country would face more volatile prices over the winter months and become more reliant on imports.