Utility supplier gone bust.


Über Member
North Yorkshire
A little background on the volatile Gas industry in the UK.
You must have noticed the meteroic rise in energy costs ? my dual gas & electric costs are 40% higher than a year ago !

I worked for the then nationalised British Gas for many years in Transco within the gas transmission network. After privatisation I 'snatched' at early retirement at the 1st chance. It was already apparent that decisions that would previously always be taken by engineers i.e safety and continuity of supply were now being taken by 'bean counters' (accountants)

The UK's main gas storage facility the Rough field which provided 70% of the UK's gas storage capacity was closed in 2017 after a Conservative government decision not to subsidise the cost of maintenance.

Many experts (then and now) lambasted this decision as short-sighted and highlighted the long term dangers.

That closure reduced Britain's buffer against price moves and left it at the mercy of global markets. ... When Centrica closed Rough, no other storage facilities were built.

N:B Rough storage was a depleted gas field in which gas was pumped back in for security of supplies

The UK's stores hold enough gas to meet the demand of four to five winter days, or just 1% of Europe's total available storage. The Netherlands has capacity more than nine times the UK's, while Germany's is 16 times the size. Britain's continental neighbours also have lower gas market prices, we no longer have the storage to alleviate market fluctuations and are forced to purchase gas at current maket prices.


We are now importing around 60% of our gas from Europe. N:B Russia supplys 50% of Europe's gas.
Experts report Russia is restricting supplies to Europe which is part of the reason for the large price rise.

As our off sea gas supplies continue to run down we will increasingly become dependent upon Russia for continuinty of gas supplies.
Does this give you a warm 'fuzzy' feeling ? :sad: or was it in 'The national interest' to keep adequate gas storage supplies ?
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Huge Member
Fly Fifer
Yep it’s a cluster…… isn’t it but hardly surprising. It may get worse before it gets better or it may not !


Über Member
You can't get renewable electric either. Once you've used it, it's gone.
Not sure whether that was mean to be a joke.
Solar , wind and tidal are termed as renewable electricity. Because they renew the electricity supply through the movement of natural forces. Gas is just setting stuff on fire that you can't put back.


Über Member
Reliable it is not !
Oh yes it is...

Or in summary, the wind seldom stops blowing and the sun comes up every day. The tides turn daily.
This has been happening reliably for billions of years.
Or we build more grid storage, like Dinorwic and all the other sometimes wacky ideas,Some here.
Dinorwic is fine but even if the top lake is full when it is required it doesn;t take long before it empties

To make renewables reliable we need some sort of large scale energy storage system that can last for a significant amount of time

I do wonder what the effect would be of every suitable house in the country having solar panels and a decent sized battery
I read somewhere that the electric grid couldn;t cope - but I think that was outof date and it has changed since
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