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Ofgem Chief Executive warns of Energy Crisis

Outgoing boss of regulator Ofgem raised concerns over Britain's over reliance on gas over the next decade. Reduced consumption necessary for security of supply.

Alistair Buchanan gave a depressing speech yesterday highlighting that Britain faces increased energy prices and uncertainty over whether we can generate enough electricity.

He criticised the closure of 10% of our power stations (coal and oil fired) in a months time, saying that it was earlier than it could have been as they did not have to close until 2016 adding to the concerns over our power generation capacity within the next three years.

As we will not have new nuclear power stations before 2020 or clean coal or carbon capture generation before 2020, that would put the focus back on gas. Gas already accounts for 30% of our fuel input to power stations a figure he predicts to rise to 60%. And that's not all the bad news, he added:

"… and we're going to have to go and shop for our gas in the worldwide markets. The concern currently is, just at the time that we have a shortage potentially of power stations, we're buying our gas in a market that's tight and consequently you've got a double squeeze.”

Mr Buchanan went on to say that improvements in energy efficiency were necessary not just to defend against higher bills but also to safeguard the supply. He warned that the near-crisis would happen between 2015 and 2018, with energy costs increasing on all elements of the bill: network costs, environmental taxes and wholesale prices.

Users of MoneyMaxim's Energy Comparison Service saved an average of £211 on their gas and electricity bills. (Average savings made over the last 60 days.)