Tuesday, March 28, 2023

Scramble to reopen natural gas storage site

As part of those efforts, Mr. Quarteng has already written to operators of the country’s last remaining coal power stations and asked National Grid to seek more generation capacity from non-gas sources.

The business secretary also suggested he was prepared to extend the lifetime of the Hinkley Point B nuclear power station beyond the shutdown scheduled this summer, but plant owner EDF said it was too late for those hopes.

An EDF spokesman said an extension is technically feasible, but there is not enough time to complete the necessary safeguards and secure regulatory approval in time for the winter.

A source in Whitehall suggested that Rough’s case was also fueled by the recent glut of liquefied natural gas (LNG) flowing into UK terminals.

So much has come that prices have plummeted and ships have been turned away, with export pipes to Europe working flat and nowhere else to store it.

He added: “If we had more gas storage, it wouldn’t have been a problem.”

Centrica is confident it can secure the investment needed to reopen the rough, but only if the government agrees to provide regulatory support, possibly through a “cap and floor” mechanism that allows the company’s investments. But will ensure minimum return.

In the past, Chris O’Shea, CEO of Centrica, has also suggested that a substantial portion of the cost could be paid by consumers through their bills, in what is known as the regulated asset base model.

The company says that the Raf could initially be used for natural gas storage, before being repurposed in the future for a mixture of gas and hydrogen, or hydrogen.

The company closed Rough in 2017 because it became too expensive to maintain without state support.

Prior to this, the facility accounted for 70pc of the UK’s natural gas storage capacity.

Tom Edwards, a senior modeller at Cornwall Insight, said having backup supplies in the rough could source additional gas to the market during the winter months, making it less vulnerable to sudden price fluctuations.

He adds: “It is useful to have flexibility at your own doorstep. It is an insurance policy, as it gives you the seasonal flexibility to deal with unforeseen changes in demand and supply.”

The government has held separate talks about reviving plans to store gas in the vast salt caves under the Irish Sea, although these are deemed a low priority as the plan, called the Gateway Project, must be built from scratch.

According to Stag Energy, this would involve using caves southwest of Barrow-in-Furnace to store 1.5 billion cubic meters of natural gas, or hydrogen.

Nation World News Desk
Nation World News Deskhttps://nationworldnews.com
Nation World News is the fastest emerging news website covering all the latest news, world’s top stories, science news entertainment sports cricket’s latest discoveries, new technology gadgets, politics news, and more.
Latest news
Related news