Prospect renews call for urgent action following stark energy gap warning

26 January 2016

Prospect, the union for energy specialists, has called for an urgent strategy to ‘keep the lights on’ after a report from the Institute of Mechanical Engineers predicted that electricity demand would outstrip supply by more than 40% within a decade.

“For some time now, Prospect has been highlighting the dangers of declining energy margins in the UK,” said deputy general secretary Garry Graham, on behalf of more than 22,000 members in energy.

“Increasing demand combined with the closure of ageing nuclear assets and thermal generation plants such as Longannet in Scotland are creating a perfect storm which compromises government pledges on capacity and energy security.

“While the government has committed to ending coal-fired generation by 2025 – ministers have been vague to say the least on what will fill the gap and their decision to abandon support for carbon capture technology looks increasingly short-sighted.”

Recent announcements to withdraw support for low carbon generation have sent a ‘chill wind’ through the energy industry – with concerns that short-term political expediency is taking precedence over long-term industrial and energy strategy.

Graham said: “The industry is characterised by ageing assets. There is a pressing need for investment in new plant and an energy infrastructure that reflects the diversity of our energy supply. Key to addressing this challenge is the need for certainty and stability in order to provide investors with the confidence over the long term.”

He added: “Potentially the UK could be a world leader in the transition to a low carbon energy future – while recognising that thermal generation will continue to play an important role for decades to come. What is needed is a vision and strategy that also ensures we have the skilled work force needed to secure our energy future.”

For further information contact:
Garry Graham
020 7902 6678 (w)
07713 511703 (m)
[email protected]uk
Andrew Child
020 7902 6681 (w)
07770 304480 (m)
[email protected]