Will the Energy Transition Only Benefit The Few?

That’s a question I’ve been wondering about since UK retail electricity prices started rising and suppliers started going bust in droves. And I am not the only one. Here’s Enel CEO Francesco Starace speaking to CNBC back in the summer:

If you look at Europe this [electricity price spike] was quite easy to predict. 2021 is the first year in which the ETS (Emissions Trading Scheme) gets into this mechanism of cutting quotas as the slack shows up, and that’s working, and I think that is something that everyone was expecting to work and it’s doing the job. The question is whether this will become too much, or whether politicians will be able to understand that they have to be part of this game, and use fiscal levers to mitigate the impact on the most vulnerable customers.

No doubt there are also other factors at work, but one way and another we here in the
United Kingdom seem be losing “this game” by many a mile at the moment.

Those “most vulnerable customers” are currently feeling the impact, as indeed are we when perusing our own electricity bills. I’ve been documenting that impact via videos of our own local friendly neighbourhood wind turbine at Upper Tremail when the wind is blowing, thanks to both Storm Arwen:

and then 10 days later thanks to Storm Barra:

I recorded another such video earlier today, when the wind was allegedly not blowing!

As Octopus Energy CEO Greg Jackson put it in response to one of my earlier Twitter threads:

Skipping forward to 3:38 in the video Francesco adds:

It’s very much in the hands of Governments and regulators to mitigate these short term spikes, and to have long term pricing signals into the market in Europe as fast as possible.

Here are today’s “short term pricing signals” across the north west corner of Europe:

As our Twitter “baby bio” has been saying for many years:

A friendly local neighbourhood energy market would also be nice!

2 thoughts on “Will the Energy Transition Only Benefit The Few?

  1. According to Bloomberg relief from high gas prices is on the way to Europe:

    The number of tankers crossing the Atlantic with U.S. liquefied natural gas that declared Western European ports as their destinations jumped 50% in just 24 hours as the continent’s energy crisis deepens. They are now 15, up from 10 on Wednesday, shipping data compiled by Bloomberg show.

    Plus, there are another 11 U.S. LNG cargoes with undeclared destinations whose paths suggest they’re headed for Europe, including the Minerva Chios, which left Cheniere Energy’s Sabine Pass LNG export terminal in Louisiana in mid-November and was in the Indian Ocean when it was rerouted towards Europe last week.

    Europe’s energy crises has intensified in recent days after halted nuclear reactors in France and low wind power output in Germany worsened a shortage that’s forcing countries to burn more coal and even oil to keep the lights on and homes warm.

    News of U.S. LNG cargoes heading to the continent and providing relief sent benchmark European gas prices dropping from record levels.

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