Will Centrica’s Rough open its reservoir for Britain’s “roughest” winter?

The reopening is predicted to help the country cement its gas stocks amid fears of shortages

Big Zero Report 2022

Britain’s largest gas storage facility, Rough could start storing gas this winter to alleviate the pressure from a potential energy crunch.

During the presentation of Centrica’s financial results for the first six months of the year, the group’s Chief Executive Chris O’Shea said the company is currently working with the government and is carrying out engineering work to allow the site to reopen soon.

Countries across Europe are struggling to build enough gas stocks to help them manage unexpected disruptions of gas flows in the winter months.

Last week, the North Sea Transition Authority granted the company an initial go-ahead to move forward in seeking further regulatory approvals required before gas storage operations can start.

Centrica closed Rough, a facility located 18 miles off the east coast of Yorkshire, in 2017.

The British Gas owner has pledged to invest £2 billion in the project.

It said: “We continue to work on developing the option to convert Rough back to a gas storage asset, with a view to ultimately converting it to a hydrogen storage asset.

“We currently estimate that this project would cost in the region of £2bn, including the cost of converting it to store hydrogen.”

Mr O’Shea added that had the site been open last winter, it could have cut around £100 from UK household energy bills.

If you enjoyed this story you can sign up to our weekly email for Energy Live News – and if you’re interested in hearing more about the journey to net zero by 2050, you can also sign up to the future Net Zero newsletter. 

Latest Podcast