September 13, 2021

Chart of the Week: Soaring gas prices raise cost of UK electricity

by Fathom Consulting.

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UK electricity prices have soared this year, prompting the collapse of two energy suppliers, which had been unable to pass on costs to consumers given a government-set price cap, which is likely to be raised in October. Gas prices in Europe have increased nearly tenfold over the last year and explain the sharp rise in electricity prices, since gas is now a key marginal supplier of electricity. The spike is a timely, albeit slightly uncomfortable, reminder of the difficulties associated with the clean energy transition ahead of the COP26 climate conference. Since renewable electricity cannot yet be stored at scale and it is not always windy or sunny when electricity is needed, ‘on-off’ sources of electricity such as gas, are still required. Renewables may be the future, but we should not write off gas just yet.

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