Britain’s war on coal has left it short on energy

Britain’s war on coal has left it short on energy

The UK’s war on coal has left the country unable to meet winter energy needs, with the announcement from the National Grid yesterday that Britain might not have enough gas to meet demand.

In 2005, the UK was a net energy exporter, however it is now close to a situation where demand is outstripping supply. This has led to an increasing reliance on importing power from Europe, which in December led to a significant jump in prices following an explosion at a Baumgarten in Austria, further fuelling the British energy crisis during the cold UK winter months.

Recent events will be a reminder for government that while it continues with its green agenda, it must not forgo essential baseload power sources that are vital during times of increased energy demand, such as coal which has stepped in to provide 20% of the UK’s energy output.

In addition, Ministers had been warned by industry leaders that the closure of the UK’s largest North Sea gas storages facility, Rough, would eradicate 70% of the country’s gas reserves – advice that was ignored, leading to a scramble for gas supplies during the recent extreme weather.

As stated in a recent a Telegraph editorial: “Consumers have a right to get what they paid for – and the Government needs to explain how its current, anti-coal energy strategy will see them through future winters.”

The recent shortfall of energy supplies has shown that the government has failed to balance its green agenda with ensuring a steady supply of reliable and resilient power to the grid.


  1. John jeffery

    It was never “Britains” war on coal!, it was always a Tory ideological war on coal!probably way too late to resurrect Britains deep coal industrynow

    • Bebopdebob.

      The Tories didn’t wage a war on coal. You either don’t know or you forgot that Wilson closed twice as many coal mines than Thatcher. Coal was becoming far too expensive to extract, the miners held this country to ransom in the 1970’s, we had 3 day weeks due to lack of coal at the power stations, Arthur Scargill thought he ran the country and bought it to it’s knees. Thatcher said never again and she was right to do so. Thatcher didn’t destroy the coal industry, the miners did that all on their own.

  2. Pingback: Britain’s war on coal has left it short on energy – leftwingnobody

  3. Andy Adams

    The government should actually do whats right and listen to common sense and not pander to the green lobby as its now been seen that this ideal simply dosnt work.

  4. Stuart Robinson

    The threatened energy shortage is most likely due to the complete lack of an energy policy by successive governments over many years. Decisions have been put off and put off until its almost too late. The attack on the fall in coal usage completely ignores the urgent environmental needs and treats looking after the environment as though its an option, rather than a necessity. The gas “shortage” isn’t really a shortage at all, its a lack of storage facility that could cause the gas lights to go out! This was of course caused by a decision taken by the government. Sorry but this article is really a disgrace.

  5. Helen Mackay

    I agree that yes we need to look after the environment but we should not have to rely on gas. I did wonder why are we getting rid of all coal power stations as this cold weather means we do need some.

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