Europe

‘We can get through the winter,’ insists Truss, amid blackouts warning

Prime Minister Liz Truss has insisted the UK has enough energy supplies to get through the winter despite industry warnings there could be blackouts.

Energy giant the National Grid warned British households could lose power for up to three hours if gas supplies run low. 

“We do have good energy supplies in the UK, we can get through the winter,” said Truss. “But of course, I am always looking for ways we can improve the price for consumers, that’s why we put into place the energy price guarantee as well as making sure that we have as much supply as possible.”

On Friday, some UK newspapers splashed warnings of blackouts on their front pages.

But Graham Stuart, Secretary of State for Climate, told Sky News that the government “is not sending this message”.

He also said London would not be urging Britons to lower their energy consumption.

“There are good reasons why people would rather take a shower than a bath because it can lower their bill […] but it has no impact on our energy security,” he said.

The government will “not ask people to unplug things […] when it doesn’t make a difference to our safety energy”, he added. 

“We think we have a varied and strong supply in all the most likely scenarios we will be fine, but we prepare for everything.”

Last year, 43% of Britain’s electricity was provided by gas-fired power plants. However, two gigawatts from coal-fired power plants are on standby in the event of a loss of imports from France, Belgium and the Netherlands. 

The war in Ukraine and the ensuing sanctions on Russia have created an energy crisis across the continent forcing some western countries to seek out new sources of fossil fuels, putting pressure on their economies and citizens.

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