The government should recognise the vital role gas storage plays in delivering energy security.
That’s the view of the Energy and Utilities Alliance Gas Storage Operators Group (GSOG) in its latest report.
The ‘Gas Storage: Securing the future of the UK energy market’ report highlights gas as the single and most important fuel in the UK’s energy mix and towards a low carbon future.
It stated gas storage can make a significant contribution to energy security, by ensuring gas is maintained at times of major supply or demand shocks.
It also protects consumers from price spikes ultimately reducing overall gas bills, therefore it is also vital for the efficient operation of the UK energy markets.
However, the report added in recent times the market value of storage has significantly deteriorated resulting in extremely challenging conditions for operators leading to the withdrawal of some existing capacity and the stalling of investment in new facilities.
Roddy Monroe, Chair of GSOG said: “Gas storage can and does make a significant contribution to achieving energy security by ensuring that gas supplies are maintained at times of major supply or demand shocks. It protects consumers from price spikes and reduces overall gas bills.
“Due to the challenging economic conditions, existing UK storage capacity is being withdrawn and investment in new facilities has stalled. The UK currently stores significantly less gas than its European counterparts so it is important that the benefits of storage are recognised and rewarded to help protect against further reductions. Gas storage is strategically important and unlike other types of energy infrastructure, once gas storage facilities have been decommissioned they are lost forever.”
ELN has contacted DECC for a comment.