The UK government is proposing delaying the scheduled closure of the country’s emergency coal-fired power plants, in an effort to divert a potential energy security disaster come next winter.
Over fears of potential blackouts thanks to the turbulent uncertainty surrounding Russian energy, National Grid, UK’s energy company, entered into £368 million worth of contracts to keep the Drax, Ratcliffe, and EDF plants online, going as far as to procure additional coal to keep on standby. However, the contracts were only temporary, and the Drax and EDF units are scheduled to shut down by the end of March, and all coal reserves will be sold.
UK energy secretary Grant Schapps wants to keep the plants on standby for yet another year however, because he thinks it would be “crazy” to put the country’s energy security in peril. When The Times asked if he’s satisfied with the plants’ upcoming closures, he responded: “No, I would absolutely want to make sure that we have the resilience there in case we need it, and I’ve already sent instructions to make sure that that would be the case. We’re not going to leave this to chance.”
According to Schapps, the UK needs to keep a stockpile of coal for next winter should it be required. “I’m not going to risk our energy security. I’ll want it on standby for next year, of course, it would be crazy not to,” he explained, adding that the government is in the midst of “investigating what a contract would look [like]” in order to keep the plants open.
Information for this briefing was found via The Times and the sources mentioned. The author has no securities or affiliations related to this organization. Not a recommendation to buy or sell. Always do additional research and consult a professional before purchasing a security. The author holds no licenses.