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Big freeze: Industrial users could be left without gas today
As the Beast from the East tightens its grip on the UK, National Grid warns they may not be enough gas to meet demand today.
Plummeting temperatures have pushed up household demand while Britain’s imported gas supply has been hit by outages.
The operators of Britain’s pipeline network said this morning that forecasted supply for the day was 50m cubic metres short of expected demand.
Experts believe that it is unlikely that the shortage will affect household supply, but it could affect large industrial users which are typically forced to go offline before domestic and other business users when demand outstrips supply.
These industrial users will be paid compensation by National Grid.
After a supply warning yesterday, wholesale gas prices increased by 74% to a peak of 200p per therm – a 12 year high. Prices have since fallen back to 170p per therm.
National Grid data from Wednesday showed that gas demand was 28% above what would typically be expected at this time of year.
A National Grid spokesperson said: “Due to the cold weather some supplies have tripped but we’re also seeing some come back. We are in communication with terminal operators and closely monitoring the situation. Market prices are high, reflecting the supply and demand position.”
Previously, the effect of gas shortages would have been moderated by Centrica’s Rough gas storage site, but this large facility was closed in 2017.