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Friday, June 28, 2013

Risk of UK blackouts has tripled in a year

Ministers responded by unveiling plans for factories or large businesses to be paid to switch off their power during winter evenings to prevent households' lights going out.

Energy secretary Ed Davey admitted: "Without timely action there would be risks to security of supply."

Ofgem said that the risk of blackouts in 2015-16 had tripled from the one-in-12 it estimated in October to just one-in-four, if the same assumptions of Britain's likely energy demand were used.

The spare capacity margin - the buffer between the electricity Britain's power plants can produce and expected demand - could fall below 2pc, down from a 4pc estimate in October, as more power plants have closed.

"Our assessment suggests that the risks to electricity security of supply over the next six winters have increased since our last report in October 2012," the regulator said. "Small reductions in margins from current levels would result in a significant increase in the risks to security of supply."


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