Millions of Britons face winter power cuts

BRITAIN faces a “real risk” of blackouts this winter because reserve supplies of electricity are running dangerously low, experts warned last night.

The National Grid’s Winter Outlook report reveals they stand at just five per cent – almost half last year’s level and the lowest since 2007.
It has raised fears that millions of homes may be plunged into darkness this winter.
Ian Fells, emeritus professor of energy conversion at Newcastle University, said the country faces a “very serious” situation.
He said a reserve margin of 20 per cent was generally regarded as necessary for safety. Anything lower raised the risk of blackouts.
Prof Fells said: “This is a dangerously low margin and reveals a real risk of things running out. Even with a margin of 20 per cent, reserves are stretched during a very cold spell and could run out. If there is a problem with power stations this margin just isn’t enough.”
He said the network was having to rely on power stations which should have been closed and replaced.
“The Government has known about this but done nothing about it. Nobody is building new power stations and we will have to rely on coal-fired plants when they are supposed to have been closed down.”
The report said electricity margins had “decreased from historically high levels over the last few years”. It blamed EU emissions ­legislation for the fall, but insisted it had “a diverse range of import capacity” to avoid the lights going out. The report said: “This has been driven by the effects of the Large Combustion Plant Directive legislation and economic pressure on older gas-fired power stations (which has caused them to close).
“Whilst our central forecast of margin is 5 per cent against ACS [Average Cold Spell] demand, actual margins will depend on demand [and] generator availability.”
Chris Train, National Grid’s director of market operations, insisted there were enough reserves to cope with a harsh winter.
The Tap Blog is a collective of like-minded researchers and writers who’ve joined forces to distribute information and voice opinions avoided by the world’s media.
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9 Responses to “”

  1. Anonymous says:

    WTF !?!

    Don’t most folk have gas central heating these days?

    HETT

  2. Road_Hog says:

    That is the mistake that most people make.

    Your gas central is driven by an electrical pump. No electricty means no gas central heating.

    Also,most people aren’t aware of how cold a house can get once the heating has been off for 24 hours during a cold spell.

    I’m not one that hgenerally suffers from the cold.But a couple of Christmases ago, I was replacing a daiator in the bathroom and ran put of time, so I had to leave the heating off overnight and the following day (system was drained of water).

    I got up during the night because it was so cold that I couldn’t sleep. I went on the computer and was sat there with two fleeces on and I was still shivering. The wife was sat on the sofa the following day with a duvet and she was shivering.

    It doesn’t get any warmer during the day, the house just continues to lose heat until the internal and external tempratures are in equilibrium.

    I would suggest that people buy one of those cheap portable generators, which aren’t the best in the world, but will do for emergency only use. It least you’ll still be able to run your heating, a few lights (even if it is only the front room and the upstairs toilet) and the TV or laptop.

    Other alternatives are, buy a wood burning stove and get those cheap lanterns that they sell in Poundland and 99p shop and buy the indoor usage parafin.

  3. Anonymous says:

    Strange how in all my life I have never seen a grid power cut in winter with the exception of sever weather which has brought down lines. So what’s the deal? Why are we being faced with what looks a like planned kill switch?

  4. Anonymous says:

    The power cuts have already started here, I had two small ones just yesterday.

  5. Anonymous says:

    Come on, they say this sort of thing every year, but I suspect this time there’s an added agenda to push fracking in the UK.

  6. nan says:

    call me stupid but i didn’t know they could store electricity!!not like gas and oil, i thought electric is generated and used. This makes no sense to me how do they store electricity?

  7. Anonymous says:

    Good job I bought plenty of candles.

    They light the house up a little bit and you can warm your hands up a little bit with the heat given off.

    Obviously won’t cook your food.

    You’d think since WW2 we’d be progressing as a society, but we just seem to be going backwards not forwards. It’s being done by design by TPTB too.

  8. Anonymous says:

    @nan

    They can store electricity in HUGE batteries.

  9. Anonymous says:

    I live in high rise with no gas lines.. No electric means no heating.. And we aren’t allowed candles or portable gas heaters due to fire risks and past fires (hence why gas lines were removed)… So basically I (with everyone else in all other flats and appartments) will suffer with no food or heat.. And my pet birds will die… If however the electrics stay on… We all heat each other (had heating on all day and only cost 64p yesterday and 8p today thanks to all the floors below and double insulated walls)

    How come EVERY country but the UK (and parts of usa) seems to be going back to stone ages?

    In the past 3 months there’s been 2 power cuts in the area. One my whole Street, and another was the whole estate.. And it caused chaos and ‘road rage’ type of attitude…. Its sad how many of use use less electric with energy saving led bulbs and tv… Yet prices are one of the most expensive in the world.. But we are running out of electric.

    Here’s my idea.

    To all shops.. When closed keep the lights off.. What’s better? Night vision cctv? Or power cuts with no lights or cctv?

    To closed car parks.. Turn the lights off..

    To side roads and roads not used often.. Turn the streetlights off…

    Most of the electric generated is wasted by commercial property and “night time abandoned roads and car parks”

    I look out and see hundreads of lights and wasted electric by companies and the council… Surely a cut of lights in places that don’t need to be on is a massive step on its own….

    Then all the people working and paying taxes can enjoy their electric without all the wasted electric using up resources..

    Then step 2…… ENERGY COMPANIES… USE ALL THE MILLIONS OF £’S PRODUCT YOU MAKE PER WEEK AND BUILD MORE ELECTRIC AND STOP USING THE MONEY ON YOURSELFS AND SHAREHOLDERS…

    I read electric companies “only make 94p profit a week per home average”… Think about it… 94p a week… Times the MILLIONS of customers… Plus the MILLIONS of commercial customers… That’s obvious they are making millions of quid a week profit… So… WHERE THE **** IS IT GOING THEN?

    IF I HAD THE MONEY I’d build lots of electric power plants and use all the profits to improve on electric.. And also as I wouldn’t allow millions of quid profit to waste.. Prices would go down for both electric companies and customers.. So they could then make profits and customers wouldn’t care as it’s cheap.

    Sorry for long comment btw..

    Rant over

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