Octopus Energy hails Rough site as major boost amid energy crisis

Ukrainian MP outlines brilliant strategy to solve UK energy crisis

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While Liz Truss has announced that bills will be frozen at £2,500 for two years from October ahead of fears that customers would have to dig deep into their pockets to pay for Ofgem’s £,3549 price cap, the Prime Minister also pledged to address the “supply” side of the crisis. As Russia’s war in Ukraine and President Vladimir Putin’s gas cuts have exposed Britain’s vulnerability to volatile gas markets, Ms Truss pinpointed the importance of sourcing gas at home to avoid importing the expensive fuel from abroad.

In her speech in the House of Commons on Thursday, Ms Truss pledged to lift the fracking ban and committed to issuing 100 oil and gas licenses in the North Sea, and the UK also recently announced plans to reopen the Rough gas storage site after Centrica got the green light.

Octopus Energy boss Greg Jackson told Express.co.uk the reopening of Centrica’s North Sea site, which recently received the green light by the North Sea Transition Authority, will be a huge win for Britons.

He said: “It is really important to do everything we can on supply in the short term. This winter, we’re getting the Rough storage facility up and running, that is great.

“If we can secure even more supplies of gas, that is great. Let’s get ourselves through this winter and then get on the right schedule.”

But Mr Jackson, whose company specialises in sustainable and renewable energy, also highlighted the importance of the country boosting its green energy sources as part of a long-term plan.

He said: “We need to create more energy in the UK, that means dramatically more renewables. And if we can scrape some more North Sea gas that is all fine.

“Let’s improve energy independence, especially through very cheap renewables, and it could be coming online quickly.”

As winter approaches, the Rough gas storage site off the East Yorkshire coast could help the UK shore up supplies, addressing Britain’s poor storage capabilities it has suffered from since closing the site in 2018.

Experts say that boosted storage capacity offers protection from unexpected supply issues and can help shield consumers from skyrocketing prices.

But Rough is not the only North Sea site the UK is hoping to open amid the energy crisis.

Shell’s Jackdaw field has also been given the green light as the Government scrambles to shore up supplies ahead of the winter.

Chancellor Kwasi Kwarteng, who was Business Secretary at the time of the announcement, said: “Jackdaw gasfield – originally licensed in 1970 – has today received final regulatory approval.

“We’re turbocharging renewables and nuclear but we are also realistic about our energy needs now. Let’s source more of the gas we need from British waters to protect energy security.”

But this was much to the dismay of climate campaigners, who argue that fossil fuels must stay in the ground due to the urgency of the climate crisis.

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Ami McCarthy, a political campaigner for Greenpeace UK, said the move was a “a desperate and destructive decision”.

She said: “They could immediately shave billions off bills, get a grip on UK energy demand, create thousands of jobs, boost our economy, tackle the climate crisis and avoid future crises – if they just upgrade homes to be warmer and greener, and invest in clean and cheap renewable power.

“But instead, once again, they’re handing out lucrative permits to the likes of Shell for a project that won’t start producing gas for years, that won’t lower our bills, but will create massive emissions, causing deadly flooding and wildfires.”

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