Firefighters have been battling a fire that broke out early this morning at a key electricity converter station in the UK which has shut down a major cable that brings power from France. This outage has resulted in worsening Britain’s energy crunch and as a result of this, Gas and power prices have jumped.
The outage is believed to last until 13th October and has come at the worst time with supplies already short and prices at record highs. France is Britain’s biggest supplier of power via two cables that run across the English Channel.
National Grid warned that power capacity would be smaller this year back in July, “With margins already tight for this winter,” the outage will “tighten those margins further, resulting in higher U.K. power prices,” said Adam Lewis, partner at Hartree Partners LP. “This is also likely to tighten the U.K. gas markets as the U.K. will need to substitute imports with its own generation.”
Gas and power prices have jumped as the outage is believed to be out for at least a month. The lack of wind in the UK is boosting demand for gas, and also pushing up power prices.
The UK could face electricity shortages as soon as today if just one large power station suffered an unplanned outage, said Tom Edwards consultant at Cornwall Insight.
“We could start seeing problems from 5 o’clock,” Edwards said. “If anything goes wrong we might not have anything left.”
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