The energy package

Today we are told to expect a new energy policy. This note is based solely on press accounts of what the government may announce.  There will be two different parts to it. The first is to tackle the underlying problem. We have too little domestic energy. We are too dependent on imports from an energy starved Europe. We need to produce more of our own oil, gas, hydro power, renewable energy and nuclear energy. We need to prolong the lives of those gas, coal and nuclear stations where it is safe to do so, as we wait for the new investment to go in and provide us with sufficient alternative supply. I look forward to bold steps to promote more UK onshore and offshore oil and gas, which will bring in substantial tax revenues, create more well paid jobs and lower the CO2 generated compared with importing more LNG. I look forward to decisive action to commission new nuclear facilities through smaller nuclear reactors, to explore the commercial roll out of more ways of storing and using wind power and to ensure the lights and heating stay on this winter and next.

The second part is the need for immediate action to deal with the cost of living and business crisis created by extreme price movements in the gas and electricity markets here and on the continent, affecting our imports. If the government decides on a comprehensive price control as a temporary measure this would indeed take the worst pressure off business and families and save many jobs currently threatened by unaffordable business energy bills. It will also bring with it a substantial bill for taxpayers and the state in the form of borrowings needed to subsidise the supply of energy below the cost of production and purchase. That is why the government needs to reassure markets and taxpayers that everything will  be done to eliminate the demand/supply gap to bring prices down and to speed an elimination of price controls. Whilst they are in place the government will need to ensure it encourages investment in new energy supply. This requires prompt granting of licences, ending some of the penal taxes on the energy produced from new facilities and allowing contracts to supply that are reliable and make economic sense. Government itself needs to cut its own energy usage to show the way to reducing demand pressures on the  currently limited supply. One thing that most people do agree about in this contentious debate is the desirability of more insulation of buildings and more fuel efficient machines and processes where these can be afforded.

So the important questions  are likely to be

How will the government ensure proper incentives to greatly expand UK energy supply from domestic resources?

What can be expected of demand management in the public sector, and how can government help the private sector cut demand whilst still keeping warm and carrying out the work?

What controls will there be on the costs of this intervention?


  1. Mark B
    September 8, 2022

    Good morning.

    Sorry Sir John I need to correct you on something. It was the BREXIT Party that did it in for Theresa May’s Premiership, not UKIP. Close enough though for government work as they say 😉

    Little of what has been suggested will bare fruit this coming winter of discontent. Policies are only created to capture cheap sound bites and little long term thought is given sue to the short life cycle of a parliament and even a Minister. Why sow the seeds of fortune only for others to reap the benefit of that harvest. Look at what happened in 1997 when Labour took over ? The Conservatives bestowed upon them an economy on the rise and gave them the aura of financial and economic prudence. Something that was not deserved.

    The government is going to have to make cuts to non-essential parts of the State. If the government seeks to borrow more it might find it increasingly difficult as the Bond Markets are apparently getting the jitters with the UK’s ability to service its debts. This means interest rate rises and high taxes to pay those interest payments.

    I fear that the begging bowl we used with the IMF may be called into action once more.

    1. PeteB
      September 8, 2022

      Mark, you and I both worry about the level of goverment spending. I’m all for cutting non-essential parts of the state. Let’s see if the Civil Service allows it. As a starter on areas for savings why does Government need to support arts or sports?

      I note Sir J has not included any reference in his comments to the net zero ideology. If we were simply to say “we will follow the leaders in reducing our CO2” that would allow lots of savings/benefits – maintain carbon intensive industries, retain & expand gas production, remove green levies (taxes). No point us being at the front of the line when the UK is only 1% of world emmisions.

      1. a-tracy
        September 8, 2022

        Pete, isn’t a lot of money for the arts and sports gathered from the National Lottery?

      2. Peter Parsons
        September 8, 2022

        Supporting sports is called an investment. In my 20s I had an NHS surgeon tell me that they’d rather treat me for the odd sporting injury now and again as the long term health benefits of me being active meant that I was far less likely to require their services for other, far more expensive to deal with, conditions later in life.

      3. Ed M
        September 8, 2022

        ‘As a starter on areas for savings why does Government need to support arts or sports?’

        – That’s a PHILISTINE comment to make and so anti Tory.

        The Arts are essential not just to the soul and sense of patriotism of this country but also directly and indirectly inspire and support our economy in general – not just the arts but also media. Most artists are poor. They deserve every scrap of help possible (JK Rowling went from relative poverty to a billionaire and her contribution to this country, to the economy and otherwise, HUGE for just one person).

        Life’s too short without the arts (when I was young and little money for entertainment, I’d visit The National Gallery like every week – it helped to inspire me and keep me on track).

        Sport is essential because it’s part of national team support, the Olympic Games, benevolent competition which young men need, exercise and discipline which young men need, and connected indirectly to the army and being a team player at work. Sport also contributes hugely to our economy.

      4. Ed M
        September 8, 2022

        The Conservative Party is about Freedom, A Strong Economy but also PATRIOTISM – not miserable Scrooge-like, penny-pinching capitalism at the cost of things such as the Arts.

    2. Lifelogic
      September 8, 2022

      “The government is going to have to make cuts to non-essential parts of the State.” Which is about half of it. Start with HS2, encourage more private education and health care with tax breaks, stop rigging the energy market, reform the dire NHS to make it responsive to users, scrap net zero, cull the soft loans for worthless degrees (circa 75% of them), have a bonfire of red tape, cut and simplify taxes, stop the war on the self employed and landlords, cut all the PCC, woke and diversity drivel, relax planning rules…

    3. Mike Stallard
      September 8, 2022

      Bonds are getting less desirable and the pound is now sinking and very low compared with the Euro and the Dollar.

      1. Ian Wragg
        September 8, 2022

        No Mike, the pound is steady against the Euro
        Dollar interest rates are higher and it strong against most currencies

    4. Cliff. Wokingham.
      September 8, 2022

      Mark B
      Indeed we need to cut back the size of the state.
      All we need now is the political will to do it.
      First of all, we need an adult conversation as to just what WE want the gangster state to do for US. What services can we do without? Will Ms Trust be able to make such cuts and does she have the will to do so? Only time will tell.

      1. Hope
        September 8, 2022

        Truss cancels British bill of rights coming before parliament next week which was the alleged tool to stop illegal immigration! Shows why Truss considers this not to be an issue!

        Time for this clueless soul to be ousted. No borders, no tax, no lawful employment adding to international health service overwhelmed, police unable to cope, no housing. Just few problems illegal and mass immigration brings, yet not a problem for Truss.

    5. Lynn Atkinson
      September 8, 2022

      It was NOT the Brexit Party, it was the people of Britain from left right and centre and the critical people in Parliament on all sides, people like John Redwood.
      I am also absolutely astonished and delighted at Liz Truss. She is terrible on Foreign Affairs and seemingly does not yet understand price rises because of commodity shortages (which are deflationary) and inflation caused money printing by the abhorrent Johnson Government.
      Redwood was right to back Truss and I am pleased we followed his lead. She is a recognisable Tory, and one who has accepted the will of the people expressed in the Brexit Referendum. That is an accolade and what we should expect from every politician. They are, after all, our servants not our masters.

      1. Mark B
        September 8, 2022

        You sound a lot like the people who cheered when Alexander (Boris) Johnson became PM. I just hope for all our sakes the new Prime Minister equally fails to live up to expectations.

    6. jerry
      September 8, 2022

      @Mark B; How many angels do you have dancing on the head of your pin?! 🙂

      UKIP compared to TBP; When a new party is filled with many the same people, much the same ideology & policy, using the same arguments, as the party that went before does that not equal the same party in all but name, just as the right claimed New Labour was just old Labour back in the 1990s, and the right were absolutely correct to call out Blair’s half-truth; people are just as correct to call out the Farage half-truth too, what ever his disciples think.

    7. Mitchel
      September 8, 2022

      “Victorious warriors win first and then go to war,while defeated warriors go to war first and then seek to win.”

      Russia has been preparing for this multidimensional conflict with the west for a long time,just as China is also meticulously planning and preparing for it’s potential(inevitable?) conflict on the other side of Eurasia.

      I doubt whether the IMF would be able to save us this time(there is all the -astronomic-debt in the off balance sheet shadow banking system for a start).As Mr Putin said in another noteworthy speech on 17/6/22 closing the SPIEF 22:

      “The economy of imaginary wealth is being replaced by the economy of real,hard assets.”

      1. Mark B
        September 8, 2022

        And what is more, we are handing what little assets we have over for pittance.

    8. Mark B
      September 8, 2022

      Sir John

      Following the sad news regarding Her Majesty, can you please say something for tomorrow. I am sure many would like to express their sorrow.

      Thank you.


  2. David Peddy
    September 8, 2022

    In order to offset some of the costs of this which as Sir JR says will be by increased tax revenues from domestic production ,I would like to see :
    1: Cancellation of HS2
    2: Freeze on all non-clinical & non teaching public sector recruitment
    3: Reduction in the size of the Civil Service
    4: Increase in Tobacco duties
    5: Review of Triple Lock & WFA for people like me

    1. Cheshire Girl
      September 8, 2022

      I think the Triple Lock should stay, but I would add another one to your list, David.

      Get a grip on the unlimited immigration to this Country, which is costing a fortune to the taxpayer, many of whom are Pensioners, as I am.
      However that seems to be an impossible task for this Government.

      1. Donna
        September 8, 2022

        No, it’s not impossible. They just don’t want to do it. And – up until now at least – that has included the criminal migrants being given a “free” ferry ride into the land of “free everything.”

        If they wanted to stop it, they would.

      2. Javelin
        September 8, 2022

        Unlimited immigration is another globalist policy that will unfold just like the green globalist policy. The BIG difference is that you can’t throw money at it.

      3. Mick
        September 8, 2022

        Agree Cheshire girl I to am a pensioner, but it’s not unlimited immigration it’s the illegals coming into our country by road and sea , instead of putting them up in 4star hotels and giving them chance to disappear into our great country why not just turn them straight round at capture and escort them back to Europe, how bloody hard can it be or does the government want these illegals as cheap labour makes you wonder

        1. The Prangwizard
          September 8, 2022

          What would our leaders do if we had a land border with France? Would they let thousands a day simply walk over to us? If they wouldn’t why do they let them come over by sea?

      4. Shirley M
        September 8, 2022

        Agreed, Cheshire Girl, but the government don’t want to reduce immigration, be it legal or illegal. Why else would they keep lowering the requirements of the points system and treat illegal immigrants better than legal citizens, and also fail to deport more than a handful, even when they fail asylum? They won’t even deport violent criminals, FGS! (I say won’t rather than can’t because the 80 seat majority gave you the means to do whatever you wanted).

        The CONS government have been totally dishonest with the people of the UK. TOTALLY dishonest! They sent out a bigger message than Blair ever did. The CONS invited the whole world to come live in the UK, not just the people of the Commonwealth.

      5. Ian Wragg
        September 8, 2022

        Don’t hold your breath in either immigration or fracking.
        The coal mine in Cumbria is sho el ready but the government prevaricates.
        I’m looking for actions not rhetoric.
        I did hope the vocal minority get put back in their box.

        1. John Hatfield
          September 8, 2022

          Johnson has gone Ian. We have a new government which hasn’t had time to prevaricate.

      6. Dave Andrews
        September 8, 2022

        If the triple lock stays, how are you going to recover the national debt each pensioner has contributed to the next generation, by their lifetime of voting in borrow and waste governments?

        1. a-tracy
          September 8, 2022

          11 Aug 2022 — HM Treasury has confirmed receipts from inheritance tax (IHT) during the 2021-22 tax year hit a record high of £6.1 billion.
          Up 14% year on Year

        2. a-tracy
          September 8, 2022

          Dave Andrews
          2. This size pension pot is worth about £40k at 65
          “You usually pay a tax charge if the total value of your private pensions is more than £1,073,100. Your pension provider will take off the charge before you get your payment.”

          3. 4 Jul 2022 — PENSIONERS are being warned more over-65s will be forced to pay income tax this year because they earn more than the personal tax free allowance. Fiscal drag. “3 Jul 2022 — Some 400,000 pensioners will pay income tax this year because of the government pausing thresholds” Independent

          4. 16 Jul 2019 — The number of individuals over the state pension age paying 45 per cent of income tax has increased by almost 10 per cent

        3. a-tracy
          September 8, 2022

          Dave Andrews – continued
          5. 10.09.21 “Designed to pay for the NHS and social care, the tax overhaul will result in about 1.3 million working pensioners over the age of 65 paying national insurance (NI) contributions on their earnings for the first time.” Guardian

          6. The rise in pension age for all women from 60 to 66 +

          7. The rise in pension age for all men from 65 +o 66 ++

          There are plenty of people, Dave that think the government has plucked the pensioners quite a number of times after Blair government introduced the increase pension age.

        4. a-tracy
          September 10, 2022

          Sir John, wouldn’t one good conservative way of assisting your next generations through this economic squeeze, be for government to officially raise the amount of lifetime gifts you can give within seven years of your death tax free from the current £3000 pa or £6000pa per couple. If this hit the news it could encourage some lifetime giving to kick start spending.

          This money would aid the Country by being spent rather than hoarded. These rates do not seem to have increased for years so it is a fiscal drag of epic proportions in ‘real terms’ a massive tax increase. Or do the Conservatives want people to be in debt and the money held in bank accounts, someone told me that allows the government to print more money, don’t know if that is true?

      7. No Longer Anonymous
        September 8, 2022

        Cheshire Girl – it would also be proof positive that The People of the UK come first and that we are back in control.

        Anything less and the 80 seat Tories remain a puppet Government that got into power by deception.

        There is a saying: The way you do one thing is the way you do everything.

        Leftist immigration policy = Leftist economics policy, Leftist policing policy, Leftist health policy… and on and on…

      8. jerry
        September 8, 2022

        @CG; Immigration is only costing a fortune because of our silly, often knee-jerk, immigration polices, those on the hard right have made that bed, they need to be made to lie in it!

        1. Peter2
          September 8, 2022

          I’m puzzled Jerry.
          Who exactly are these “hard right” you speak of that have introduced these “silly knee jerk” immigration policies

        2. Narrow Shoulders
          September 8, 2022

          Care to expand rather than sound bite Jerry?

      9. Lynn Atkinson
        September 8, 2022

        Agreed! We have the poorest pensions in the developed world and that is a disgrace. I have hope that Braverman will get a grip on illegal immigration and indeed must start mass deportations of same.

      10. Ed M
        September 8, 2022

        Well said

    2. SM
      September 8, 2022

      6. Call a halt to all foreign aid distribution.
      7. Explain why house insulation is needed if the temperatures are (allegedly) going to be rocketing.

      1. glen cullen
        September 8, 2022

        We’ve has house insulation grant programmes since the 70’s…..those house that wanted and needed insulation have it already….I don’t understand why labour and the tories gone on about insulation, as though it will save the planet

      2. ignoramus
        September 8, 2022

        Temperatures aren’t going to be rocketing. Remember we are talking about an average 2 degree centigrade global rise from 1850 to 2100.

        Mainly what we expect to see is more variability in weather. More flooding, more heatwaves, more migration from Africa. It’s the growing cost of it all that is the problem.

        Insulation is good because it keeps your house warm in winter and cool in summer, meaning you don’t need to spend money on heating and air-conditioning. Winter is not suddenly projected to become warm.

      3. John Hatfield
        September 8, 2022

        7. To keep the heat out?

    3. Lifelogic
      September 8, 2022

      Truss should undo all Sunak’s vast manifesto ratting and make it very clear that under her Tory manifestos will be honest & kept too. So you can trust the next one in 18+ months time. Otherwise it will not be worth the paper it is written on. Under Truss you will get what you vote for. This really would be a first.

    4. Julian Flood
      September 8, 2022

      Tax the wind farms. Tax then till their turbines squeak.

      Their contracts must be honoured. Taxation is not in the contract.


    5. Mickey Taking
      September 8, 2022

      6. Significant reduction in so-called Foreign Aid. (China, India, Pakistan etc nuclear weapons owners).

    6. MWB
      September 8, 2022

      Review of Triple Lock ?
      UK state pension is by far the worst in the developed world, and you want it to be even lower ?
      You missed off from your list:
      1: Stop ALL overseas aid.
      2: Stop immigration, and make those already here, pay into the tax system for 10 years before they are entitled to health care and other benefits.

      As things are going now, the next step for UK is the IMF.

      1. Peter Parsons
        September 8, 2022

        Legal immigrants (1) have to pay an additional health care surcharge on top of all the tax the rest of us pay in order to access healthcare, and (2) have no access to benefits or other state support.

        1. a-tracy
          September 9, 2022

          Really Peter? How do all the legal female single-parent immigrant mothers in London get housing benefits and other benefits then?

    7. Michelle
      September 8, 2022

      I agree on HS2 and on reading several articles as to the amounts spent on consultancies and various perks for them, it seems scandalous.
      These vanity projects will cease to exist at huge costs to the general public only when those whose project it is are made to repay some of the money back to the tax payer when it becomes apparent it’s a money pit.

      2&3 absolutely and basic common sense.
      Whether true or not but I read where Truss is promising 20% more border force. Why?? So an extra 20% of the population go on the payroll to stand around as ‘meet and greet’.

    8. jerry
      September 8, 2022

      @David Peddy; Agreed on cancellation of HS2. It has always been the case that money can be spent more wisely on other transport projects, even if it remains allocated for use on the railway network.

      Not sure about an outright freeze on public sector recruitment! Would that not also affect the usual and standard ‘churn’ replacement, did you mean a freeze on the creation of new positions?

      A reduction in the size of the Civil Service would be nice, but there needs to be safeguards, otherwise those who are the true dead-weight cost upon the taxpayer will keep their jobs, they will simply get rid of those lower down who actually do worthwhile work and thus services we all need at some point in our lives suffer; having said that any job cuts can only occur once there are real alternate jobs in the private sector for these people to fill, this will require expanding the economy by making UK based industry direct their profits short-term into proven re-invest here in the UK, not pay out substantive bonuses or dividends, worse move money off-shore, otherwise any savings will simply end up paying the increase in Universal Credit (dole) payments similar to what happened in the 1980s.

      Why only hit the smoker, if your rational is on health grounds why not also increase alcohol duties?

    9. Hope
      September 8, 2022

      Sorry to see you were not offered a job in govt. not surprised as the woke cabinet is the same old same old. Quota not ability.

      Therefore the cost of living is down to your party and govt policy over 12 years. Your party could have fixed the roof but decided woke was more important along with net stupid! Coffey as DWP
      advocated mortgages for those on welfare and made work not pay now in charge of health, Kwartang failing in BEIS made chancellor! Sharmer still in charge of crap 26!

      Truss now announcing subsidising Russia export of gas (sanctions clearly not working) despite continuing support of war with Ukraine! Nothing on N.Ireland protocol where EU never fired a shot to obtain N.Ireland and total access to our fishing waters!

      No mention of illegal immigration, no culture war against Marxism. Bednoch given trade!

    10. Ed M
      September 8, 2022

      Well said. Good practical, balanced policies.

    11. Ed M
      September 8, 2022

      There are good arguments for HS2 but overall it has to be thumbs down, right – especially after the huge borrowing bills to be paid back from 1. Covid 2. Energy Crisis

      And not just to pay for the Energy Crisis. But also to support the energy policy of the future so that we’re more self-sufficient. Surely, this is all a lot more important than HS2?

    12. glen cullen
      September 8, 2022

      Please cancel HS2

    13. Timaction
      September 8, 2022

      A vast reduction in all forms of the state including Treasury, Home Office etc etc. Then huge cuts in backroom staff in the NHS, Councils, Police, MOD, DVLA, all quangos etc etc. Anything with a job entitled Diversity etc should be culled and their tasks taken up by existing managers. Anyone who works from home can stay their and let go. All senior paying positions should be reviewed to see if the pay scales are needed. Far too many on vast wages for no reason, qualification or demand. Bit like MP’s I suppose. (Our host is excluded of course!)

  3. DOM
    September 8, 2022

    If in doubt abuse the taxpayer. If in doubt create a crisis. If in doubt offer a solution to the crisis they create. If in doubt abuse the taxpayer. The path to servitude and authoritarianism is a well worn one

    1. No Longer Anonymous
      September 8, 2022


      Covid, Putin, Green are all ways to tax and impoverish us whilst telling us it’s for our own good. To cover the gross political and economic ineptitude of the past three decades.

      – Our Covid response will kill by hypothermia all those we crippled the economy to save from disease. So it wasn’t really about saving lives.

      – Our Putin response supposedly to save Ukraine’s democracy and impoverish ourselves doing so yet we sacrifice our own democracy to the whims of pro EU terrorists (IRA mob rule.) So it’s not really about saving democracy.

      – Our Green response to result in high tax and borrowing and national bankruptcy, so it’s not really about sustainability or ‘renewables’.

      Covid, Putin and Green are all about blame shifting. So are quangos.

      All Brexit has done (for Nottingham Lad Himself) is remove a fourth thing to blame it all on and that was at least a step in the right direction.

    2. Ian B
      September 8, 2022

      @DOM well said – the root of all evil in the making. Time and time again sets out to prove they have signed up to the conspiracy therory of the ‘Great Reset’ By fighting the fundementals of freddom and democracy.

      Dont manipulate just set the people free and they will do a better job every time.

    3. Catherine M.
      September 8, 2022

      The media will continue to foment crises, they seem to think they need them to get attention.

  4. Cartimandua
    September 8, 2022

    British Gas has set my dd at a level where it takes my entire state pension based on estimates. I submit real readings and keep photographs as proof. The smart meter no longer works. Luckily I have other pensions. British Gas tell me they cannot reduce the dd. The software will not allow it. Currently I am 400 pounds in credit. I would rather keep the interest on my own money. British Gas must be making a fortune making up numbers and keeping people’s money like this.
    The heating is off, we no longer use the dryer, and I no longer use the oven routinely.
    Is anyone noticing this B.G. scam behaviour?

    1. Mark B
      September 8, 2022

      Look on the brightside, Centrica’s (who own British Gas) share price has nearly doubled in the last year.

      I am of course being sarcastic, not at you.

    2. Mickey Taking
      September 8, 2022

      Cancel the DD, if necessary move your money out of the bank account. You will have to pay the ongoing monthly/quarterly bills of course.

    3. Narrow Shoulders
      September 8, 2022

      Apparently they are using you money plus loans to guarantee margin calls on the futures markets.

  5. agricola
    September 8, 2022

    SJR, you mirror my thoughts. I would only add, the mining of our own coal for those working coal fired power stations that remain and for the production of steel. Then there is a question mark in my mind about about importing wood pellets for Drax. Can we revert to coal, avoiding a power loss gap. All the above being adjustments while we await the introduction of Rolls Royce SMRs around the UK. The new programme needs this level of radical thought and the parallel neutralising of those elements in our society who would have us back in the dark ages.

  6. rose
    September 8, 2022

    Very apposite. I hope you will write a similar piece on food security before we are in a similar situation there. Is it a coincidence that our new Secretary of Stae for DEFRA is British Sri Lankan? If anyone can point to what happens as a consequence of idiotic farming policies, he should be able to. At present, anything and everything seems to go into our fields – solar panels, wind turbines, new scrubland, houses, roads – except pasture and crops. Will he stop the madness? The BBC Farming Today programme have just done a typically prejudiced hatchet job on him, working up the farmers against him in the course of that.

  7. Javelin
    September 8, 2022

    The energy package is simply a loan to fix the problems created by the green ideological madness.

    It has take over 2000 years to create the Western civilisation and the woke-globalists have almost destroyed it in 2 years.

    Worse still all the problems they have created have not yet unfolded.

    1. glen cullen
      September 8, 2022

      Spot On

    2. Mitchel
      September 9, 2022

      Not even Attila managed that!

  8. Donna
    September 8, 2022

    It would be nice if the new energy policy didn’t believe in 6 impossible things before breakfast. But based on the experience of the past 12 years, and in particular the past 2, I’m not expecting much.

    The fact that Alok Sharma, who celebrated blowing up a perfectly good coal-fired power station only a year ago, has been re-appointed COP26 Big Cheese gives a clear indication that the Eco Nutters are still firmly ensconced in Truss’s Government.

    1. Mark B
      September 8, 2022

      I wonder how much he is earning, what car he drives, and whether or not all his energy comes from renewables.

      Betcha it isn’t any of those.

  9. Cuibono
    September 8, 2022

    Oh dear!
    So…same old same old path towards a Labour government? could we be surprised.? Just the same old tories led by another globalist, desperate to fully crash the economy asap.
    Her speech….
    Why will we be building roads when our cars are under threat? And petrol is sky high.
    How will we build hospitals when our steel mills are closing and energy is scarce and uber expensive?
    Where will the staff for the new hospitals come from? We know that answer at least!

  10. R.Grange
    September 8, 2022

    Sir John, you mention ‘cutting demand’. Do you expect this to happen as: a) pubs and restaurants close, b) non-essential shops close, c) factories close, d) smart meters restrict how much energy people can use, or e) all of the above?

  11. Denis Cooper
    September 8, 2022

    My wife and I agreed that we had done everything that was feasible and worthwhile to insulate our home, and in fact we had gone beyond that with cavity wall insulation which would have a very long payback period. However if energy prices are going to be permanently higher in the future we may look at this again. Triple rather than double glazing is the norm in some colder countries, and maybe I will do something more with the loft which already has as much lagging as will fit between the joists under the boards. But there will always be the problem of adequate ventilation and the accompanying heat losses. Given that until recently the government has been applying an insane EU tax on energy saving materials, and is still doing so in part of the UK:

    I have no bad conscience in this matter.

  12. Alan Holmes
    September 8, 2022

    How about acknowledging that inflation is a monetary phenomenon and caused entirely by government borrowing and spending in a reckless and criminal manner over the last few years? How about acknowledging that net zero is a disastrous idea and will cause misery before it collapses? How about acknowledging that your party has completely failed to provide fuel security for this country and has squandered untold billions in promoting and prolonging a NATO inspired conflict in Ukraine? How about acknowledging that your party is completely on board with the WEF agenda to reduce and control food production for it’s own ends?
    This crisis is 100% caused by western governments who should be collectively and individually tried for crimes against humanity.

    1. anon
      September 9, 2022

      Some might say this was sponsored terrorism.

  13. Narrow Shoulders
    September 8, 2022

    Unfortunately the decisions have already been taken but if government is to intervene in this market I would like to see the wholesale price subsidised and not the retail price. If the price at which generators purchase gas and coal is subsidised then the price of production comes down which has the knock on effect of reducing the price of all electricity, which for some reason is linked to the highest wholesale price. Ogem imposed operating profit margin percentages will then cap the retail price for consumers and businesses saving taxpayers the cost of subsidising retail margins as part of the package.

    Our government will commit billions of taxpayer and future taxpayer funds to this intervention, that cash must not reach consumers as a direct payment. Anything given will be hugely difficult to remove and targeted intervention at the poor and the vulnerable is actually quite unfair on the rest of the population.

    Intervening by subsidising the wholesale price will be cheaper overall, achieve the same protections for households and businesses and be invisible as the subsidy will reduce as the wholesale price reduces towards the natural prices.

    Of course giving money direct to the producers to subsidies the wholesale price will raise howls of profiteering and demands for extra taxes but taxpayers will be paying these profits with any intervention so make it invisible so inflation is unaffected (fewer wage demands) and benefits are not later “raided” when the help is withdrawn.

    By “capping” the wholesale price, competition can be reintroduced to the gas and electricity market and fixed contracts can return preventing media scare stories about next quarter’s prices.

    1. Narrow Shoulders
      September 8, 2022

      We need to address supply in the manner you suggest in the article too, and the sooner we do that the less we will have to pay out in subsidies, but it is a global market so the supply will need to be addressed globally. We will not be able to impose price caps on the domestic supply otherwise producers will sell elsewhere.

      Net zero must be culled globally. Net- zero is dead long live lower pollution

  14. Sir Joe Soap
    September 8, 2022

    A mess created by short-term thinking that should have been avoided, awaiting another mess to temporarily sort it out.
    Historians will mull over the 12 wasted Conservative years when energy and national security were blown to pay for continuing welfarism and immigration. They’ll point to the desperation of people voting Conservative because the alternatives were worse, then to leave the EU in the hope of solving these problems only to find they didn’t really leave. Historians will ask where democracy went, and how it was coaxed back. Or perhaps how it wasn’t.

  15. Javelin
    September 8, 2022

    I’m shocked on my report card on the Boris Government, and I wrote it. Let’s be honest this wasn’t a Government who cared about the ordinary person.

    – Rishi (Chancellor) – Highest taxes ever
    – Patel (Home Office) – Mass migration
    – Liz Truss (Foreign Office) – War in Ukraine
    – Raab (Justice) – Unpublished Human Rights Act
    – Javid (Health)- Millions in NHS backlog
    – Kwarteng (Business) – Disenfranchisement of small businesses
    – Sharma (Energy) – Green Energy Disaster
    – Zahawi (Education) – Woke Teaching in Schools

    1. glen cullen
      September 8, 2022

      Reads like New Labour

    2. Mickey Taking
      September 8, 2022

      – Carrie (Home Furnishing) – Support for independent wallpaper marketeers.

      1. glen cullen
        September 9, 2022

        In this day and age I fail to see why our PM has to live at No10 ?

  16. Roy Grainger
    September 8, 2022

    If the government wants to pay part of my energy bill I’ll accept the money (although I don’t really need it) but it means I have no incentive to reduce my energy consumption. This will mean sooner or later they will have to introduce rationing.

    Are you offering to host a small nuclear station in Wokingham ? If not why do you think any other group of local people will agree to one ?

    I agree that windfall taxes on profiteering wind/solar generators are essential – this was sold to us as a cheap source of power but at the moment they’re allowed to charge the same as if they were using gas.

  17. Denis Cooper
    September 8, 2022

    It seems to me there is little point in even debating whether or not there should be a windfall tax on the profits of oil and gas companies, given that the sums raised by the UK Treasury would be nowhere near those required to subsidise energy for UK consumers and so it is just a distraction.

    1. Dave Andrews
      September 8, 2022

      No windfall tax tells me the oil and gas companies are more powerful than the UK government.

      1. Denis Cooper
        September 9, 2022

        It tells me that we are reliant on energy produced outside its tax jurisdiction.

  18. Richard1
    September 8, 2022

    I watched PMQs for the first time in about 2 years. I thought Liz did quite well. A bit wooden and no big jokes but so what? It’s going to be very positive for the long term future of the U.K. if she sticks to her guns, implements free market polices, those policies then work as they are likely to, and then goes on to win the election despite not being a slick media performer. That will be a terrible blow for leftism.

    If we are to have this big price freeze let’s get the numbers out there so everyone understands. The main thing is to use the crisis to solve the supply problem. Get fracking going and get the North Sea permits going. And nuclear. Carry on with wind perhaps but by now the public will be getting to understand how much power actually comes from wind and the need for serious alternatives.

    The way to get the public off the stupid Labour windfall tax idea is to explain how much extra tax is already coming from energy companies due to price rises (eg fuel duty, VAT, PRT etc), the windfall tax doesn’t make much difference but is a big disincentive to investment. Explain the numbers properly and the politics will follow.

  19. Lifelogic
    September 8, 2022

    Controlling the price of energy is a mistake the best solution short term (for a short period) is probably X KWHs of gas and electricity at a low rate (enough to heat one room and for LED lighting, fridge freezer, TV and computers) – then the rest at market rates. Let the market work as far as possible to match supply and demand.

    1. Lifelogic
      September 8, 2022

      The absurd rigged market where intermittent energy suppliers get payments that do not reflect the large costs of dealing with this intermittency should also be corrected.

  20. Dave Andrews
    September 8, 2022

    What I’m hearing is the government is ruling out windfall taxes on the energy companies making colossal profits. So what we have instead is government loans to make up the difference between what the supply companies can charge their customers via a price cap and how much they have to pay for wholesale energy.
    So where is the market forces for competitive energy prices, when the energy companies can charge what they like in the knowledge it’s guaranteed by the UK government?
    Ed Miliband on the radio this morning arguing for windfall taxes. He makes more sense than a Conservative government. Unbelievable.

    1. Peter2
      September 9, 2022

      The windfall profits available to be taxed on UK energy companies are said to be approx £10 billion.
      Currently their profits are taxed at 65%
      If you put up the rate to 85% you would get an extra £2 billion.
      The governments price cap scheme is said to cost £200 billion.

  21. Mike Wilson
    September 8, 2022

    The cost of illegal immigration must be stopped by STOPPING ILLEGAL IMMIGRATION. I suggested the other day (but my comment did not appear) etc ed

    As for the rest. It’s all words. I’d like Truss to address the nation on the box and say.

    1) Between now and ‘net zero’ we are going to need gas for our power stations. It is foolish to import it in tankers because we have to pay whatever the world price is, we don’t have guaranteed supply and it creates more CO2 than using our own gas. So we need to produce more of our own gas.

    2) Similarly it is foolish to import wood clippings and burn them at Drax power station. It makes no sense to cut down trees, which store carbon, and burn them. We will phase this out.

    3) Our electricity grid needs a constant base load of power. This has to be provided by power stations. We cannot rely on wind and solar power. When the wind doesn’t blow – you could have the whole country covered with turbines – there is no power generated. In winter, on cloudy days, solar contributes very little. We need to be able to store the power from wind turbines so the power is then available when the wind does not blow. But there are currently no practical solutions to do this. So, we are going to fast track more nuclear.

    4) The recent huge increases in the cost of electricity mean the economic case for electric cars can no longer be made. It is not practical to stop the production of petrol and Diesel engined cars by 2030. Few people can afford electric cars and the environmental case for them is not as clear cut as many people say. So, whilst the government is keen to de-carbonise, we have to be practical in a world where we are only responsible for 1% of the world’s emissions.

    5) Regardless of the human rights lawyers, we are going to STOP ILLEGAL IMMIGRATION. As long as we escort the boats across the Channel, more will come. We can neither afford nor accommodate endless illegal immigration. This will be stopped.

  22. The Prangwizard
    September 8, 2022

    I imagine the majority of people in the UK have seen pictures of ‘nodding donkeys’ and maybe in reality. Many are in populated areas.

    Most people are proud of them, they know they provide independence and wealth for the USA and ultimately for themselves.

    The attitude here is quite different. ‘Nimbys’ and appeasers of that negativity and short-sightedness are given massive support from all manner of groups who think only of themselves and their advancement.

    We must change, we must adopt a belief in self reliance and determination. The rest of the world owes us nothing and in any case we have no money to pay for items we don’t supply ourselves.

    The fantasy our leaders have been following is over.

  23. Beecee
    September 8, 2022

    Change the way which the wholesale price for electricity is set to give the consumer the benefit of lower cost generation, or does the free market economy prevent this?

  24. Chris S
    September 8, 2022

    I cannot see the sense in à new government borrowing £150bn to buy gas from energy companies while at the same time allowing them to pocket the hugely inflated profits.

    I generally don’t like windfall taxes but this situation is so exceptional that I can see no sensible alternative.

    1. Denis Cooper
      September 8, 2022

      Iain Duncan Smith yesterday, from 1:27 in here:

      The government has already imposed a windfall tax and expected it to raise £5 billion, but they’ll be lucky if they get £1 billion because these are global companies and difficult to nail down. Even with a heftier tax on larger profits it still wouldn’t make much of an inroad into the sums needed to subsidise energy for UK consumers, maybe £150 billion. Which is why I say above that debating a windfall tax is a distraction.

  25. Brian Tomkinson
    September 8, 2022

    You need to put an end to the net zero scam, designed to impoverish the majority and deprive them of their liberty and freedom.

  26. Mike Stallard
    September 8, 2022

    I am waiting for this statement from the Green lobby:
    “At last we have a shortage of planet destructing oil! This is very good news as more and more of our electricity will have to come from renewables. Wind power is already producing (fill in your own figure here) percent of our daily energy and as more wind turbines come on stream, electricity will be almost free. We are delighted by the price hike in petrol as it will persuade many waverers to buy electric vehicles. Nuclear power stations, nearing the end of their life will soon be history. This will save our grandchildren the problem of clearing up the spent rods. I am very happy with the coming winter when green policies will at long last save our planet.”

  27. turboterrier
    September 8, 2022

    If this is the future then it is getting scary. Sent to me by very good friend in Vancover. Its about the first “e” fire tender. Cost $300k more than a diesel equivalent and pumps 40% less water complete with diesel back up for all the extra weight. Who gives a stuff when your house is on fire or waiting to be cut out from a wrecked car, train or plane if the tender is more environmentally friendly. All paid for by the residents in due course.
    Coming soon to a fire station near you.

    1. Mark B
      September 9, 2022

      The stupid things is :

      A) The energy to charge the fire truck probably comes from fossil fuels.
      B) If the fire truck cannot make it, either dues to range or supply issues, the carbon output of burning property will far exceed that which a regular fire truck would have done.

      As usual, no joined up thinking.

  28. Lifelogic
    September 8, 2022

    Well done to Truss for correctly telling Starmer on taxation that “he is looking at it the wrong way” and that there is nothing new about Labour wanting ever higher taxes – Labour always do. But the problem is the Tories from Major/Clarke, Cameron/Osborne, May/Hammond and Boris/Sunak have also introduced higher and higher tax now taken up to the highest for 70+ years. She needs to address this. This also combined with generally appalling and even declining public services.

    It is encouraging to hear that Truss originally won her place a Merton to read maths before switching to PPE as Nigel Lawson did too I think. Perhaps she even has a decent Maths & Further Maths A levels and even maybe even Physics. Rather a rare in parliament to have any scientific understanding beyond GCSE level and modern GCSEs are often so full of lies and green crap anyway. Perhaps there is still a good chance we can avoid Starmer/Sturgeon under Truss. Good luck to her.

    1. Lifelogic
      September 8, 2022

      Perhaps Truss is even actually a climate realist like Nigel Lawson (whose book on the topic An Appeal to Reason
      Book by Nigel Lawson 2008) is very good indeed. If only we had had some sensible energy politics since 2008 and indeed sensible economic policies, fiscal policies, healthcare policies, banking policies, housing policies, transport policies, education policies… since then. We would probably have an economy twice the current size by now.

    2. Lifelogic
      September 8, 2022

      Well done Truss also on agreeing that the on line safety bill need amending – it most certainly does listen to Lord Sumption’s sense on this issue Truss. The only negative so far is Sharma why on earth retain him? The Truss Merton Maths info was from the excellent Planet normal podcast today. A poem at the end was an excellent guide for Truss to follow.

  29. turboterrier
    September 8, 2022

    The energy package must totally reconstruct the pricing structure of the electricity markets.
    All the time gas fired generation sets the wholesale price of electricity, non gas generators make obscene windfall profits unless on cfd.
    This results in an incredible £43bn which electricity consumers domestic, commercial and industrial are paying.
    Add to that the mayhem of the Carbon Pricing system which generates more consumer cost, this should be at least suspended if not shut down all together.

  30. acorn
    September 8, 2022

    While JR posts another repeat episode of his Fantasy Brexit, Politico’s “London Playbook: Power move — Frack attack — Rishi picks up the tab”, is definitely worth a read; as always.

    1. Peter2
      September 8, 2022

      Ridiculous comment acorn
      Fracking was only one of many items in today’s article.

  31. Al
    September 8, 2022

    Yesterday it was said to cost £130bn, now it is £200bn.

    There’s a figure being bandied around, that nationalising the entire energy sector would cost £90bn. Why is the government making loans instead of buying a golden share and putting the appropriate pressure on the generators and suppliers to improve their performance? At least with shares, the taxpayer gets money back as dividends instead paying more into the firms’ pockets.

    For heaven’s sake, if she wants to go green it would cost £133.565bn to install solar panels and battery storage on every house in Britain (source Leoht) and that would give a better return and something for our money!

    1. anon
      September 9, 2022

      150-200 billion thats another 10% inflation.
      90 billion to nationalize the sector. I would agree be Bold and maybe nationalize energy suppliers.
      Immediate crisis over. Resell to create a UK based competitive non-cartel type energy supply business. No controlling foreign interests, until energy is no longer a strategic need.

      All we have is endless scenarios which are used to drain the public purse.

      We voted Brexit to enable real policy changes to suit the UK interest.

      1. Mark B
        September 9, 2022


        I think you will find that the whole of Europe and the EU is in a mess regarding energy. At least this time our lot have no one else to blame, apart form the regulators, but the regulators do not create laws or implement major infrastructure projects. We know who to blame now and that will force them, over time, to start to think not only for themselves but, for the nation as a whole. Being part of the EU meant we had to take a collective view whether such a view worked for us or not.

        Give BREXIT time

  32. Rhoddas
    September 8, 2022

    Agree with many reader comments here and your commentary ..
    Short term, dash for UK gas and oil and storage. Maybe coal too, if needed.
    Medium term, far more nuclear and renewables, hydrogen and renewable storage.
    Export spare capacity to pay off debts.
    Freeze energy bills and also cut cost of government.
    Cut 50% in quangos headcount and buildings, 20% cut in civil servants by automation and repeal for less regulation, means less to do. HS2 stop spending.

    I appreciated Liz going for growth in her opening statements, please let this include rollback of penal IR35, I will hold back on more until you start a new discussion on this vital topic.

    Feeling more cheerful than in many months, though I would have preferred you in a ministerial position to ensure action and delivery! Perhaps there is still time…

  33. Magelec
    September 8, 2022

    Where is the Royal Geological Society report on fracking?

    1. glen cullen
      September 8, 2022

      Ministerial Statement on 25 January 2018 (HCWS428) the then Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, Greg Clark MP
      ‘’Exploring and developing the UK’s shale gas resources could bring substantial benefits and the government’s view is that there is a national need to develop these resources in a safe, sustainable and timely way. As set out in the Clean Growth Strategy, the government is fully committed to the development and deployment of low carbon technologies for heat and electricity generation. As we move towards this low carbon economy, natural gas will continue to play an important role in our energy system. The government is confident that the right protections are in place to explore shale safely and has always been clear that shale development must be safe and environmentally sound’’
      Only 4 years ago – Prior to Boris & Carrie Net-Zero policy

      1. Mickey Taking
        September 9, 2022

        and what has happened since? a different sort of net zero!

  34. turboterrier
    September 8, 2022

    The new energy policy should take into consideration the following comments from Climate change expert Michael Shellenberger who wrote in Forbes:

    “Study after study in top scientific journals find that nuclear power plants are far and away the safest way to make reliable electricity…. The good news is that a growing number of scientists who specialize in radiation, climate, and public health are speaking out for nuclear power plants as critical to saving lives…. In 2013… the climate scientists Pushker Kharecha and James Hansen found that ‘nuclear power prevented an average of 1.84 million air pollution-related deaths.'”

    Starter for ten, fingers on the button?

  35. graham1946
    September 8, 2022

    Even if we do expand our home grown oil and gas, it won’t help the consumer in the slightest. It will be all sold on the ‘world markets’ so people will still not be able to afford to buy it. When the bailout ends in 2 years time (if that is the timescale as reported) – strange that that will coincide with the next GE, maybe the Tories are hoping to lose, to dump the mess elsewhere, what happens then? No idea is probably the government answer and like Mr. Micawber are just waiting for ‘something to turn up’. The companies are safe in the knowledge that however they abuse the public they will be supported by a PM who wants them to do it and will not intervene in any way. The bailout will be done by borrowing and dumping the debt on the ordinary tax payer to pay back whilst the rich get richer. Immoral. Trust won’t last at this rate, an exploitation tax is a popular idea with the public and they are fed up with politicians ignoring them and ripping them off. This could be the last Tory government for a generation.

    1. Mark B
      September 9, 2022

      It is OUR oil, gas and coal. If people want to extract it they can but, we can set the conditions. Cost to the UK consumer can me that of extraction plus say, 5%. One third of extract fuel goes to the UK, the other two thirds can be sold at world prices.


      1. graham1946
        September 9, 2022

        Yeah, but this government won’t. They support the rip off culture of this business. We need to ask why, and not accept th usual twaddle about investment, which we know they won’t spend the money on.

  36. acorn
    September 8, 2022

    A country growing its own food is a no brainer as JR has said often. Have a listen to about eight minutes into the programme. A farmer who has reduced growing food crops and makes his money, at lower financial risk, by growing bird food.

    1. Mark B
      September 9, 2022

      Correct. Government interference in the market with tax payers cash. Cash we cannot afford. Cut this unnecessary subsidy Sir John.

  37. graham1946
    September 8, 2022

    Another government cockup? I heard on tv last night a theory that recently the government were not prepared to enter into long term LNG contracts at good prices, as they were/are in thrall to the eco loon lobby who think wind will save everyone’s bacon. Consequently, we now buy on short term spot prices and beg for supplies. Sounds plausible to me. Perhaps Sir John, or maybe Mark, who seems to know this business would be able to comment?

    1. Mark
      September 8, 2022

      I am more concerned that they will do a bad deal with wind farms. I’ve commented on this a couple of times. Search threads for

      Beware Greens bearing gifts.

  38. No Longer Anonymous
    September 8, 2022

    Clearly tax and finance sticking plasters are not the long term answer. Affordable and independent energy supply is essential and it must be treated as a national and strategically essential resource – not as the property of the corporations that dig it out.

  39. Nottingham Lad Himself
    September 8, 2022

    Yes, and any State intervention to help the people to pay the bills is inherently redistributive – socialism in other words.

    It’s unavoidable when push comes to shove, isn’t it?

    So admit that.

    1. DOM
      September 8, 2022

      Ah yes, a political solution to a political problem. Oh how authoritarian Socialists adore such a 1930’s scam that the State can incite instability and then cynically offer up a solution to counter the crisis it itself incited. One would almost assume it’s all part of a grand scheme to invoke dependency to suck the life out of the civil population

      I’d rather rot in hell than live under the jackboot of Socialism

    2. Mickey Taking
      September 8, 2022

      One step from communism? the plebs exist by State decree.

  40. Michelle
    September 8, 2022

    What a farce and a window on the state of those who have been running the show for so long, that it has taken a crisis to realise the ‘bleedin obvious’ strategy of self-reliance wherever possible.

  41. Guy Liardet
    September 8, 2022

    John, please read Pail Homewood in the NOTALOTOFPEOPLEKNOWTHAT website who expertly dissects the energy crisis and exposes the utterly lunatic subsidy situation which costs us all.
    Secondly, kill Net Zero. It cannot work. UK produces one per cent of global CO2. China 31%. BoJo and Carrie have no understanding of the science or the sums. ‘Renewables’ are more damaging than beneficial. Check out the GWPF’s Net Zero Watch website. That a whole mass of politicians could be so stupid is extremely alarming. The globe is warming at 1.3degsC a century (last 45 years). Does that worry you? Every alarmist scare has never happened. Counted polar bears recently? Since the mendacious Al Gore was born, the population has CRASHED under climate change from 8000 in 1950 to 31,000 today.

    1. Mark B
      September 9, 2022


  42. turboterrier
    September 8, 2022

    The new energy policy should also take in seriously the amounts of money being spent in keeping the NZ dream alive.
    A must-read by all those that have concerns how the financing of universities, computer companies and government institutions. Written by Norman Rogers (master’s degree in physics} titled The Global Warming Golden Goose published in the American Thinker. The opening paragraphs set the scene and it just gets better:-
    Climate science was an obscure and unimportant corner of academia until the professors lucked out with global warming. The global warming idea apparently struck a spark with the government and media establishments and caught fire. Money and influence flooded from Washington to academia.

    In his farewell address in 1961, President Dwight D. Eisenhower warned against the scientific-technological elite being dependent upon government grants. Eisenhower feared that the elite would use their influence and expertise to warp public policy for their own benefit. That is exactly what is happening. Global warming is only one of many current scientific frauds that enhance the welfare of scientists and bureaucrats promoting the frauds.

    The newest religious sect is not so new, but has built up a powerful base. Cutting off government money supply and support would be a good place to start. We need common sense from the government, not all these committees, and uncontrolled expensive outsourcing.

  43. jerry
    September 8, 2022

    “more UK onshore and offshore oil and gas, which will bring in substantial tax revenues”

    More circular money in other words, I thought you were in favor of lower taxes Sir John?!

    “and lower the CO2 generated compared with importing more LNG.”

    Well that will depend on how much extra CO2 is created building those new power station, renewables etc, there is a CO2 emissions ‘cost’ when making/building anything, that is why it has now been accepted it is usually better to refurbish than build new, from buildings to hydrocarbon fueled motor cars.

    Regarding our hosts second paragraph, should such a scheme be announced, I fully expect this debt, owed by the energy end user, to be eventually written off by govt. After all it’s that circular money again, UK taxpayers money comes from the same place regardless of whether we pay a ‘surcharge’ on our taxes to HMT or pay a ‘surcharge’ on our energy bills to the utility companies (who then pay HMT). As usual this all ends up being political smoke, mirrors and half-truths, if not out right lies, the real question is who in the end gains…

  44. Ian B
    September 8, 2022

    Governments create taxes, then when these are getting to much try a sleight of hand by calling them levies. All money taken from the public by compulsion is just Tax.

    The Country is organised by Government, primarily meaning the Cabinet, the executive. The MP’s, All MP’s are supposed to hold them to account – but do they?

    Boris was just part of a long line of failures not able to look past ones ego and serve the Country and its People.
    We don’t need to have the poor subsidising those that can afford something, it just makes them poorer. We don’t need to buy our own energy from the international market place, its no big deal to sell it at source.

    This all gives the appearance of a clueless Government out to punish the people that put them there. While we all live in hope for change and wish those that are genuine all the best in that endeavour, it is difficult to get past the situation that those now in control were still part of the Government that has caused these problems. The collective responsibility was with them, it is still with them – nothing has fundamentally changed

  45. Mark Thomas
    September 8, 2022

    Sir John,
    It should be mandatory for every member of the new cabinet to read your diary (and the more rational comments) daily. That way they might understand what are the real concerns of the man and woman, in the street.

    This morning I heard the lesser Milliband ranting that there was no point in producing more domestic energy as it would be the same price as imported energy. Also that we should be relying more on renewables which would be so much cheaper. To think he was once the leader of the Labour party. He seems to be living in an alternate reality.

    1. Mickey Taking
      September 9, 2022

      Most leaders of nearly all parties live in an alternate reality, yet insist we live in a democracy.

  46. Ian B
    September 8, 2022

    How will the government ensure proper incentives to greatly expand UK energy supply from domestic resources?
    – Isn’t that the problem successive Governments have manipulated and distorted the market place for ‘personal’ pleasure. Each manipulation requires a further one to adjust what is seen as the unfairness in the system – and so on. There would be no need for incentives if Government just fell back to trusting the market and the people. Our high prices are as a result of Government manipulation, the Government has put Macron in charge of the UK market and the French Taxpayer its major beneficiary.

    What can be expected of demand management in the public sector, and how can government help the private sector cut demand whilst still keeping warm and carrying out the work?
    – Stop trying to manipulate the market place. Governments talk free market and then manipulate it for ‘personal’ political ends. All at great cost to the Taxpayer

    What controls will there be on the costs of this intervention?
    – any costs, taxpayer money should ALWAYS be with political over-site and accountability. Preferably all taxpayer expenditure should also result in it being treated as a shareholder investment with all dividends going back into funding the next venture.

  47. forthurst
    September 8, 2022

    Repeal the Climate Change Act. What we are witnessing is the direct consequence of this policy and stop blaming the consequences of this Act on extraneous factors. Focus on cost effective, dispatchable energy production and forget ‘transitional’ fuel nonsense: the climate is not under the control of mankind and the major economies of the world act as if they understand this.

    Put country before party and replace the FPTP electoral system which also produces rogue governments in the USA with one which enables new ideas and new talents rather than the derisory products of Oxford PPE courses to take decisions for which they are unprepared through their irrelevant and out of date educations.

  48. Mark
    September 8, 2022

    I caught the statement from the time of your intervention. Things that were bad:
    Appointing fanatic Skidmore to review net zero plans
    Commitment to net zero unicorn high cost solutions such as CCS and hydrogen and wind
    Commitment to net zero (see Skidmore). We need to review whether we should be attempting it, as the cost will be economically crippling – a much lower target might be affordable.

    Things that were good:
    Promises to develop our own oil and gas. Should have added coal. Promise to include NI in the bailout despite the EU.
    Focus on supply issues

    If you want to put Putin back in the box then we need global alternative supply of hydrocarbons to undermine him. A message for Biden, Trudeau and the EU.

    1. Mark
      September 8, 2022

      Add on the plus side

      Review of regulators – OFGEM, NSTA, ONR, CCC etc. all unfit for purpose
      Support for SMRs (but other nuclear needs sorting: cancel the EPR at Sizewell, get cracking on ABWRs from Japan/Korea instead)
      Credit lines for hedging collateral, needed until market volatility subsides.

  49. Stephen Reay
    September 8, 2022

    I also think the triple lock on state pensions should stay. The triple lock will help to pay fuel bills and has brought many pensioners out of poverty. I not a pensioner yet ,but I think it’s short sighted for those who seek it’s end, it’s simple, what pensioners get today I’ll get tomorrow, god willing. Remember the state pension is only £9960 and most will not get the maximum.

  50. Ed M
    September 8, 2022

    ‘We need to produce more of our own oil, gas, hydro power, renewable energy and nuclear energy’

    – Well said.

  51. Iago
    September 8, 2022

    What has happened to Johnson’s Resignation Honours List? Are the civil servants sitting on it?
    Excess deaths per week are once more at 15% above average according to the government’s figures. This began after the great injection of messenger RNA into most of the population by the government, but the government shows no interest. Perhaps our population has simply risen by 15% in the last five years (the comparison period).

    1. Shirley M
      September 8, 2022

      More likely to be deaths of many cancer patients, and those with other life threatening illnesses, that have received treatment too late, or have been refused treatment ‘due to covid’.

  52. X-Tory
    September 8, 2022

    So, we’ve now had the actual announcement. There is much information missing – particularly on the actual cost of these measures (!) – but let’s analyse what we’ve been told.

    On the plus side:
    (i) The new price cap of £2,500 will certainly benefit consumers. As it includes the £400 rebate already announced, it means the actual average cost will be £2,100 – compared to the current £2,000 cap now. So this effectively freezes the current position. Yes, gas is some 50% more expensive than it was a year ago, but it is at a level people can live with, and will ensure that people are not profligate in their consumption of gas, thus hopefuly avoiding shortages and rationing;
    (ii) It will cut the level of inflation (by 5 percentage points, apparently), which will have numerous knock-on benefits, such as reduced government borrowing costs, lower pay demands, less industrial strife, lower daily bills for the public, etc;
    (iii) Equivalent support will go to businesses;
    (iv) The moratorium on drilling for ‘on-shore gas’ (I am happy to adopt the ‘house style’ here) is being lifted;
    (v) The government wants to stop renewable energy suppliers from profiteering by charging the more expensive gas price rather than their own, lower, price.

    On the minus side:
    (i) There was NOTHING to explain HOW the government will accelerate the roll-out of the RR SMRs;
    (ii) The help for businesses is only scheduled to last for 6 months. We are told that “the Government will provide ongoing, focused support for vulnerable industries” but this sounds MUCH too limited and will result in many non-supported businesses still going bankrupt, just in 6 months’ time rather than now!
    (iii) Cutting the costs charged by renewable energy producers will be done by negotiation rather than be imposed, meaning this will take forever and result in higher prices than could be achieved by the government actually, err, you know, governing!
    (iv) There was NO indication that drilling for onshore shale gas will be made easier, such as by easing the restrictions. There is still the ridiculous caveat that it can only happen “where there is local support”, thus subjugating the national interest to local NIMBYs.
    (v) There was NO indication that the new gas and oil extraction licences (whether in the North Sea or onshore) will contain a clause requiring the output to be sold to the UK, at UK prices, rather than exported and thus be of no benefit to UK consumers.

  53. glen cullen
    September 8, 2022

    So Liz isn’t going to approve fracking for shale gas anytime soon

    1. John O'Leary
      September 8, 2022

      Fracking will resume from today.

    2. Mark B
      September 8, 2022

      Are you surprised ?

  54. Original Richard
    September 8, 2022

    The energy package needs to start with repealing the unilateral CCA and Net Zero which have caused the shortage of energy and hence recession by deliberately withholding the capital needed by fossil fuel companies to develop the necessary supplies of affordable and reliable energy.

    The unilateral CCA/Net Zero is pointless as we emit just 1% of global CO2 emissions and major emitters, China and India, are still intending to burn 6 billion tons of coal each year.

    It is also unnecessary as there is no data showing a climate emergency/breakdown, but then why should there be if there are 4 molecules of CO2 per 10,000 (400ppm) instead of 3 molecules of CO2 per 10,000 (300 ppm)?

    The records show that global temperature and CO2 are at historically low levels and temperature is not determined by CO2. In fact Antarctica Vostok ice core data going back 450,000 years show CO2 following temperature. CO2 declined from 6000 ppm 500 million years ago, the start of the Cambrian explosion, to just 180 ppm at the last ice age glacial maximum 20,000 years ago and came very close to the 150 ppm that plants, and hence all life on Earth, needs to survive. Fortunately as the planet warmed as we exited the ice age the CO2 level rose to 280 ppm just before the Industrial Revolution. We actually would benefit from increasing CO2 levels to 1000 ppm or even more to assist plant growth.

    The CCA/Net Zero will simply destroy our economy.

  55. X-Tory
    September 8, 2022

    Off-topic, but very important: Yesterday I said that BEIS should be broken in two, as energy is such an important and ministerial time-consuming issue that it should be separated from the also enormously-important job of business secretary. Also, while I think JRM will probably do a good job on the energy front, I simply don’t trust him to promote and protect UK businesses. What, for instance, will he do about Chinese-owned Nexperia’s bid to buy Newport Wafer Fab, one of our only microchip makers? This requires an urgent decision. Also, on the subject of microchips – one of the most important industries in the modern world, and one that, to be a truly independent nation, you need to be self-sufficient in – here is a very important report in the Times:

    The report explains that “the UK could become a world leader in the production of compound semiconductors”. These are the most advanced type of chips, in which we have cutting-edge scientific know-how. But note the word “COULD”!! As the report goes on to explain: “The European Union and the United States, through their “chips acts”, are spending tens of billions of euros and dollars to expand their industries to bring production onshore.” If the UK fails to do the same then we will FAIL to capitalise on our potential and FAIL to build a vital industry – one that is fundamental to virtually every other modern industry. It is VITAL that the government invests in this industry. As one of the leading UK compound semiconductor companies (IQE) says: ““We are not asking for bailout money … We are asking for the right funding model to be able to increase capacity in the UK. It is a partnership in which, in general, about a third should be funded by government, then the third by ourselves and a third by our customers. The amount of investment required is really a fraction of what we see other countries putting on the table.”

    Will JRM put government funding on the UK table? Will he invest in a British semiconductor industry? Will he make Britain strong, safe and independent? Will he ensure that we can compete with our global rivals? Will he do what an intelligent and PATRIOTIC minister should do? Unfortunately, I have NO faith in him whatsoever. As a friend of his, can you have a word in his ear?

    1. Mark B
      September 9, 2022

      The best investment the government could make is to create a low tax low regulation regime and, by making sure such industries are considered in the national interest and protected from foreign takeovers, and asset stripping. That way they could get investment in the usual way.

  56. Peter2
    September 8, 2022

    An excellent article from Sir John.
    I like the new PMs energy plans.
    Good news on fracking.
    Hopefully the ridiculously low 0.5 tremour limit will be raised and a scheme introduced to benefit and compensate people who live near such sites who may be inconvenienced.
    We also need to become far more energy independent as quickly as possible.
    If we produce gas and oil here in the UK we improve our balance of payments, gain well paid jobs, add to the overall supply of energy which must help stabilise or even help to reduce prices and gain a tax revenue from UK energy companies.
    I am all for more renewable energy capacity, help for people to insulate their properties and a drive to have as much nuclear capacity as France.

  57. turboterrier
    September 8, 2022

    Net Zero Watch has produced a well-prepared radical paper on the current crisis.
    Straight hard talking with a lot of common sense.

    London, 8 September: The Prime Minister must take urgent steps to reduce the astronomical cost of her borrowing plans to limit consumer energy bills (which could cost £130-170 billion), or face potentially disastrous increases in public debt.
    Net Zero Watch is today publishing a concise statement of the measures that Liz Truss can take to bring energy prices down in the short term, thus preventing an economic meltdown.
    Net Zero Watch Director, Dr Benny Peiser said:

    The choice is clear. Liz Truss can save the economy, or she can shuffle the deckchairs once again”.

  58. turboterrier
    September 8, 2022

    Lord Deben has been hauled over the coals according to the Mail On-Line for warning the PM against lifting the fracking ban amid energy crisis.

    The Government’s climate change tsar was told he needs to ‘live in the real world’ after he warned Liz Truss against lifting the fracking moratorium despite the energy crisis.

    Is it not time to remind him he does not control the government although it hasn’t always seemed like that.

    Tell him and his Committee thank you, but its time to throw your hook.

  59. turboterrier
    September 8, 2022

    Does the energy package take into account all the panic buying of EVs and their demand on the distribution network, which will reflect on the power available for domestic consumption?

    As the cost of electricity rises the petrol prices are stabilising it is now cheaper to run a petrol vehicle than to run an EV.

    1. Mark B
      September 9, 2022

      Not only that, the government have brought in legislation that prevents you charging your EV during peak times.

      Government website Sir John

  60. Lindsay McDougall
    September 8, 2022

    Fine, but let’s focus on getting through this winter and the next. It will probably take until 2024 for Russia to withdraw bloodied from the battlefield in all of Ukraine except Donbas and Crimea. Then both sides might be willing to negotiate. Russia is hurting from sanctions and so are we.

    My question is simple: which new energy sources can be developed before the Spring of 2024? North Sea oil and gas, fracking if local government can be ordered or persuaded, on shore and off shore wind farms? We might also reopen some coal fired power stations but only if they burn decarbonised (‘clean’} coal. Can we delay decommissioning of one two nuclear power stations? I don’t know the answer but it is necessary to focus on the time scale.

    Regarding the reduction of consumption of energy and gas, we can rely on business to take its own decisions now that the price cap is in place. But guidance to the public must be given to cut domestic consumption. I made some suggestions the other day. With Sir John’s prodding, the Environment Secretary and the Business and Energy Secretary should jointly draw up a comprehensive list of consumption reducing measures that they can both sign up to and push them hard.

    1. Clough
      September 9, 2022

      Where exactly is the ‘hurt’ that Russia is suffering from sanctions, Lindsey? She has a strong currency, new markets for energy products and so much spare cash that pensions and the minimum wage have been increased by 10%. Inflation went up initially but is now coming down below that in some EU countries. Sanctions have been an opportunity for local entrepreneurs to take the market share of foreign brands like McDonalds and Starbucks. If they’re hurting that bad, I wonder why support for Putin remains at nearly 80%, even according to a polling organisation (Levada) usually sceptical about his government.
      There is no sign that Russia will give up what she has occupied in South Ukraine, in 2024 or any other time. Your suggested withdrawal solution might have worked as a negotiated outcome in March – it was under discussion by both sides at a meeting hosted in Turkey. But Ukraine wasn’t allowed to agree to it, and now it may be too late

      1. Mitchel
        September 9, 2022

        Interest rates were hiked initially too but have already been reduced to below where they were in February and are expected to fall further this year.Shipyards full of work,record grain harvest expected,record dairy output,etc

  61. Mike Wilson
    September 8, 2022

    I heard Ed Davey on Radio 4 at lunchtime. He was giving his reaction to the energy help. He said that using more of our own gas would not affect the price we pay. He was not challenged. This is stated frequently as a fact by net zero believers. Even, I think, you Mr. Redwood, have said as much.

    Why is this so? Why is gas in the USA one quarter of the price here? Why don’t they have to pay ‘global prices’?

    He also said the way to get energy prices down was more renewables. Again, he was not challenged by the BBC interviewer. Why do the never ask ‘What happens when the wind doesn’t blow? How can the energy be stored? What’s the plan?

    But, no, they blithely make these statements and are never challenged.

    That said, some sort of ‘insulation program’ seems sensible.

    Reply If you produce more of something the price falls

    1. Mike Wilson
      September 8, 2022

      Not according to Ed Davey and almost everyone else. They say it doesn’t matter how much of our own energy we produce, we still have to pay the ‘global price’. So, my question is unanswered. How come the price of gas in the USA is a quarter of the ‘global price’? Anyone?

  62. margaret
    September 8, 2022

    Best wishes for comfort and strength to the Queen.

  63. Mike Wilson
    September 8, 2022

    Well, well, well, Kwarteng has sacked the top civil servant at the Treasury. Maybe things are looking up.

    I see my posts are not making it past moderation. I wonder why.

    1. Mark B
      September 9, 2022

      You know why 😉

      Just keep on going Mike.

  64. Mike Wilson
    September 8, 2022

    So, a massive energy bill relief package but not extra tax on the windfall profits. So, let me get this straight.

    An estimated £160 billion is going to be borrowed and, via consumers, handed to the energy suppliers who are making massive, unprecedented profits. Mr. Redwood, care to justify?

  65. Nottingham Lad Himself
    September 8, 2022

    My Her Late Majesty rest in well-deserved peace.

  66. Vernon Wright
    September 8, 2022


    We might have hoped (as indeed I did) amidst other signs coming from the new government — e.g. the resumption of fracking, the encouragement of hydrocarbon production in the North-Sea fields and elsewhere — to be witnessing some kind of scientific enlightenment in relation to ‘climate’ policy.

    So I was disappointed, Sir John, to learn in this evening’s news, that the P.M. “remains committed to Net Zero”. Apparently the government — along with the rest of a scientifically illiterate Parliament — still has much to learn.


  67. Original Richard
    September 8, 2022

    The energy package needs to :

    – Stop the transition from our own affordable and reliable fossil fuel energy (coal, gas and oil) to renewables which will never be able to provide sufficient, affordable and reliable energy. Neither will renewables be secure as 95% of wind turbine parts and 100% of solar panels are supplied by China and China controls the raw materials for batteries, motors and generators.

    – Stop the electrification of transport and heating, not just because evs and heat pmps are expensive and impractical, but because the local grid is incapable of handling the power required and rationing of energy will be the result.

  68. paul
    September 8, 2022

    Energy companies have been bail-out today with a blank cheque, that will be just the start of what coming.

  69. paul
    September 8, 2022

    What they say is rubbish, this country importing Russian oil and gas from China and elsewhere and will continue to do so.

  70. Original Richard
    September 8, 2022

    So we’re told that the Energy Supply Taskforce leader studied law and the Net Zero review will be conducted by a modern history graduate.

    The PM needs to implement the recommendations Kate Bingham made in her Romanes lecture where she warned that the country will face unsurmountable challenges because of “a notable lack of scientific, industrial, commercial and manufacturing skills both amongst Civil servants and politicians.”
    Start at 28 minutes

    Energy supply and Net Zero requires an engineer to call a halt to the digging even deeper of the Net Zero hole, which still includes the ridiculous, economy destroying plan to “accelerate” renewables.

    The 25% of nuclear by 2050 (viz between 2043 and 2050), 15 years after the decarbonisation date, is simply insufficient and the duff technology of EDF’s EPR should be ditched for existing, proven workable designs which can be completed far more quickly, including SMRs.

    At least we have the glimmer of hope that fracking for gas may save us.

    1. turboterrier
      September 9, 2022

      O R
      Sadly people like Kate are ignored on a too regular basis by our politicians and governments.
      The tumour of ignorance is slowly but steadily destroying common sense and our world.

  71. Fedupsoutherner
    September 8, 2022

    RIP Ma’am. You served our country well. It’s a very sad day for our nation.

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