Various mentions of activities on the energy sector (News Guardian, January 15) have been reported and written about.
North Tyneside Council is promoting a very worthy scheme to achieve lower costs for gas-electricity supplies, and there was a mention of organisations working in offshore industry.
I do not know the activities of Northern Offshore Federation, or the Barrier Group, but I have seen some parts of the debate on TV taking place in Parliament on the problems of UK’s energy, and in particular the growing confusion of what actually works for ordinary households.
Such debates are well worth following as energy services are largely in the hands of profiteering companies.
A major employer on the Tyne and elsewhere is Wallsend’s OGN, which has just revealed it is not (at present, I hope) continuing with a manufacturing facility producing components and heavy engineering for offshore wind turbines.
Its work must be even more difficult with the world’s ‘oil wars’.
My own energy bills might illustrate what actually happens with the ‘big six’ suppliers, as I was required to renew my supply agreement in December 2014.
I was presented with a ‘change’ of contract, where I had used significantly less gas and electricity than previously, but for that situation I would be required to pay a substantial increase for 2015. Last year I was required to pay a 31 per cent increase for 2014.
A well known Conservative MP, Christopher Chope (Christchurch), at odds with the coalition, said in the Commons that the energy industry was far too dependent on subsidies, and a number of people from all parties were ‘subsidy junkies’.
He went on to say that the real world leaders of offshore wind turbines, Denmark, had, like OGN, reduced their interest in more such turbines, but they will sell as many to the UK and anyone else as can be paid for.
We could do that in the north east.
I would like to believe that the wind can supply a large part of the world’s energy, and I suppose if there are enough of them spread all over, some proportion will be able to supply useful outputs.
However, the cost of these is quite enormous, and electricity is overwhelmingly important to everything we are involved in the UK.
Mr A M Johnson