A guide to the UK energy security strategy

(The Guardian, 19 Mar 2022) Amid a cost-of-living crisis the government is attempting to secure energy supplies and try to dampen soaring costs.

What is the energy security strategy?

Soaring energy prices are helping to create a cost-of-living crisis, with the average family’s energy bill rising by 54%. The energy price cap has been raised to £1,971 and a further increase is expected later this year, which would take the average household bill to about £2,300. The government has responded by offering a one-off £200 discount on bills from October, to be paid back over five years.

The UK is not alone: energy prices are rising around the world as industries struck by Covid-19 lockdowns resume operations, and energy supplies still need to ramp up after plunging two years ago during the first lockdowns. The war in Ukraine is adding to the problem: Vladimir Putin has used his dominance over EU energy supplies (Russia supplies 40% of Europe’s gas, and 60% of Germany’s) as a weapon of war, and turned down the gas taps by a quarter before the invasion.

Putin could tighten supplies still further, and in any case the EU wants to move away from Russian fossil fuels to stem the flow of money to the Kremlin war machine – Europe has paid more than €15bn (£12.6bn) for Russian gas, oil and coal since the invasion began.

External link

The Guardian, 19 Mar 2022: A guide to the UK energy security strategy