Energy crisis live: the government concludes an agreement to relaunch the production of CO2

“We focus on helping vulnerable people” – Kwarteng on the energy crisis

The government has reached an agreement with the American company CF Industries to restart the production of carbon dioxide at its British factories in Cheshire and Teeside.

Business Secretary Kwasi Kwarteng met the company over the weekend after it shut down work at its factories following a spike in global gas prices.

The production halt has led to a crisis in food production, as CO2 is widely used in food processing, from packaging of meat and other foodstuffs to the carbonation of beer and others. soft drinks.

It comes as the government’s cap on energy prices is set to rise by an additional £ 178 per year from April 2022 as gas prices skyrocket, according to modeling by researchers at an intelligence agency on the market.

Cornwall Insight researchers expect the price cap to be raised to £ 1,455 for six months from early April next year.

This would be a 14% increase from the already record £ 1,277 that customers will pay between October and April, and £ 317 from current levels.


Government Should Relax Gas Rules Amid Soaring Prices, North Sea Firm Says

A major North Sea gas producer has said it could likely supply the country with large amounts of additional gas if the government relaxes restrictions on what is allowed to be used in the grid, amid an outbreak prices.

Neptune Energy said it could have produced an additional 10.7 billion cubic feet of gas had restrictions on calorific value – the measure of energy contained in gas – been lowered.

If companies produce gas with too low or too high a calorific value, they are required to mix it with other gases to change its composition, before it can enter the network.

But sometimes there isn’t enough proper gas to mix, causing oil and gas companies to leave gas in the ground that could otherwise be extracted.

In a letter to the business secretary, the company’s executive chairman, Sam Laidlaw, said: and responsible for security.

“This would allow producers to supply more gas as it would reduce the blending requirements needed under current regulations.

He said these changes could be implemented immediately and last until September 2022.

A number of European countries, including the Netherlands, Germany and Hungary, are already using gas below the range accepted by the UK.

The National Grid and the Health and Safety Executive are expected to approve this type of proposal.

Celine WadheraSeptember 21, 2021 5:06 PM


Boris Johnson: “Supply chains are very secure”

Speaking to Sky News political editor Beth Rigby in New York City, Boris Johnson said supply chains were “very secure” and dismissed the risk of a Christmas disruption.

“I am very confident in our supply chains, I am very confident that we will be able to keep the energy suppliers running. “

He added: “The market will start to fix it… In the meantime, the government will do everything it can to help people, to fix it, to make sure we straighten things out.”

When asked if the energy crisis would last for months, the Prime Minister said: “Supply chains are very secure… I don’t think we’re going to have problems on this scale.

Celine WadheraSeptember 21, 2021 4:42 PM


No new details on agreement with CF Industries on CO2 shortage

No new details have been released on the deal with U.S. fertilizer company CF Industries over Britain’s current CO2 shortage, Downing Street said.

A No 10 spokesperson said: “The business secretary has been in talks with CF Industries since the weekend on how we are putting their factories up and running as soon as possible to ensure a continuous supply of CO2 to UK companies. “

Before shutting down production, the company supplied around 60% of the UK’s food grade CO2, which is used to stun animals for slaughter, to package meats and salads, and to carbonate beer and other carbonated drinks.

Celine WadheraSeptember 21, 2021 4:20 PM


Boris Johnson defends universal credit cut as energy bills rise

Boris Johnson has refused to back down on planned benefit cuts despite a minister warning desperate families could face a “hard winter” with rising energy bills.

Business Secretary Kwasi Kwarteng said the combination of rising gas prices and the impending £ 20-a-week cut in universal credit was a “difficult situation” and he had spoken to cabinet colleagues, including Chancellor Rishi Sunak, pressures facing households.

But the prime minister insisted that the government’s approach was “the best way forward”.

When asked if there would be a reversal of the decision to end the £ 20 increase, he said: ‘We believe the best way forward for the people of our country is to save money. high wages and high skills with controlled immigration, rather than relying on the old approach of low wages, low skills and uncontrolled immigration, it did not work, and people voted against it.

Chiara GiordanoSeptember 21, 2021 3:54 PM


Government is doing what it can to make sure supermarket shelves are not empty, PM says

Boris Johnson said the government “is talking to energy companies, doing what we can to keep prices low” and making sure “supermarket shelves are not empty”.

He told the BBC “we have very, very good supply chains in the UK”.

The Prime Minister suggested that “the market across the world will start to solve these problems” in energy prices and “they will rectify themselves”.

But he said it also demonstrates the need to invest in wind and nuclear power.

Chiara GiordanoSeptember 21, 2021 3:20 PM


“Christmas is here”: Boris Johnson denies that people will have a hard time this winter

Boris Johnson has said he does not accept that people are struggling this winter due to the rising cost of living and the impact on income of the end of the holiday and the £ 20 reduction per universal credit week.

And the Prime Minister insisted that “Christmas has arrived”, amid concerns that a surge in Covid cases, soaring energy prices, welfare cuts and disruption of the food and toy supplies could spoil the celebrations for a second year in a row.

Our political editor Andrew Woodcock has more details:

Chiara GiordanoSeptember 21, 2021 3:08 PM


Government signs agreement to restart CO2 production

The government has reached an agreement with fertilizer company CF Industries to restart production at its UK sites with the aim of ensuring the availability of carbon dioxide for industries, including the food sector.

News of the deal, reported by Sky News, follows talks between the company and Business Secretary Kwasi Kwarteng.

Follow our last minute story for more updates:

Chiara GiordanoSeptember 21, 2021 2:43 PM


Energy crisis could affect next year’s crops, board warns

The head of environment and resource management of the Agriculture and Horticultural Development Board has warned that the crisis could affect next year’s crops.

Jon Foot said, “As energy prices hit new highs, the price of natural gas has caused major fertilizer producers to shut down their facilities.

“The problems are unlikely to be resolved during the winter, as energy demand during the winter months continues and natural gas supplies will remain limited, and despite discussions between government ministers and the energy industry and fertilizer producers, we should assume this crisis will fuel next year’s harvest.

“This has had an impact both on the livestock sectors where the lack of carbon dioxide used to humanely stunning pigs before slaughter is insufficient and has caused animals to retreat on the farm, and the closure of factories. of fertilizer caused the price of fertilizer to double in less than a week.

“Many farmers have enough fertilizer in stock to establish their winter crops, but supplies are less secure for crops sown in the spring. “

Chiara GiordanoSeptember 21, 2021 2:15 PM


Government takes “direct action” to secure carbon dioxide supply, says Boris Johnson

Boris Johnson said the government was taking “direct action” to ensure carbon dioxide would be available for industries such as the food business.

Speaking to the BBC on his trip to the United States, the Prime Minister said that the spikes in gas prices that led to the disruption of CO2 production “are caused by the wake of the global economy after quite a long period of cryogenic paralysis – it’s thawing everywhere and it’s causing supply chain problems ”.

“Obviously, we are working with companies to make sure we can maintain supplies,” he added.

“On the issue of carbon dioxide which is particularly important to certain industries, we are taking direct action to ensure that it continues to be available. “

Chiara GiordanoSeptember 21, 2021 2:02 PM


Cabinet minister hints at deal on carbon dioxide shortage

Kwasi Kwarteng, the business secretary, hinted that a deal could soon be reached with companies over a carbon dioxide shortage, but warned it could come at “some cost” to the taxpayer.

It comes as consumers could start to notice shortages in poultry, pork and baked goods within days due to the shutdown of two UK sites that produce Co2 for UK businesses.

Our political correspondent Ashley cowburn has the full story:

Chiara GiordanoSeptember 21, 2021 1:44 PM

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