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High energy prices threaten UK hospital services

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By Phil HAZLEWOOD

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Saw an article that over 50% of UK pubs are claiming they can't afford energy and may have to close. and now this?

Surely solar and wind and hydro and thermal can take the strain, no?

What happened to North Sea oil and gas?

They need to hurry up with the China led building of the nuclear power plant.

-8 ( +6 / -14 )

Well this is "victory" of your "values",congratulations.

Take a break and think why this have happened and who have caused this situation...let me guess...your hate against Russia?I may be close isnt it?Now pay for your hate dearly.No regrets.

Enjoy your "fruits".

-5 ( +13 / -18 )

@Wakarimasen, some good questions.

What happened to North Sea oil and gas?

It currently supplies about half of the UK's needs. But it's privately owned and is sold at international market prices.

Surely solar and wind and hydro and thermal can take the strain, no?

I've read they currently make up just over 40% of the UK's electricity usage (over 90% in Scotland). But most people still use gas for heating.

The cynics might wonder whether the government is firing up fear with headlines talking of two thirds of the population being in fuel poverty soon. So when a new Prime Minister is selected, and they take some "drastic action" and only a third of the population freezes to death over the winter, they will claim a great achievement.

10 ( +12 / -2 )

Well this is "victory" of your "values",congratulations.

Take a break and think why this have happened and who have caused this situation"

Indeed.

-2 ( +9 / -11 )

Have to blame the Tories for this. They privatised the gas and electricity industries and now the companies who run them only feel responsible only to their shareholders. Maximum profits, happy shareholders, bigger bonuses for execs. Time to nationalise these and other key industries again. And I am a Tory btw

4 ( +10 / -6 )

Surely solar and wind and hydro and thermal can take the strain, no?

I've read they currently make up just over 40% of the UK's electricity usage (over 90% in Scotland). But most people still use gas for heating.

If this is true and similarly in other parts of Europe then they are in for a big shock once people do convert to electricity and the system cannot supply the needs.

I am from a Canadian province where hydro is king it produces more hydro electricity than it needs and sells the excess to the USA.

The largest part of our electricity consumption is heating and cooling if the electric production isn't up to doing that and more then it isn't working.

If everyone in Scotland converted to heating with electricity this winter would the system hold?

-5 ( +4 / -9 )

Poor UK. Maybe they can order fuel from Ukraine?

-9 ( +4 / -13 )

The bigger issue is with GPs, which are private and compensated per service in a similar manner to Japan, who will need to deal with increased energy costs without the financial tools available for NHS hospitals.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

I don't know how the UK government allocated the oil rights but wouldn't it be making more in royalties from higher prices.

In Canada the oil industry was in the dumps Alberta in deep trouble, but this good for Canadian Dirty oilsands oil war was a "windfall" of extra money, in January the Alberta government was expecting $14 billion in oil royalties (not sure what the feds percentage is) but because of high prices Alberta has already made $28 billion and is using the extra $14 billion to pay off debts ( occurred during low oil prices time).

Wouldn't some UK government regional if national be getting more royalty money to pay for the NHS?

Does anyone know how the UK worked it deals with private oil companies, is it flat rate or fee plus Royalties based on market price?

-6 ( +1 / -7 )

If everyone in Scotland converted to heating with electricity this winter would the system hold?

Probably not, but I'm not up on all the details. About 32% of Scotland's electricity is exported to other parts of the UK. I don't think we can just cut the lines (or can we?). Also, renewable electricity isn't yet stored in any great amount, so there are days when we must fall back to conventional power stations. While there is a move towards not using gas (I understand new houses will no longer be fitted with gas boilers over the coming years), it will be a long time before we get rid of it completely.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

The narrative is that this is all down to Ukraine, it's not. Ukraine has compounded it somewhat but this was on the cards way before Russias invasion. It is just very convenient to blame it on the war as people will ask less questions about the way energy contracts and futures are traded, the government subsidies to energy companies and the downright profiteering by those companies at the publics expense, on a necessity of the way we live. People need to take their anger to parliaments door and not just in the UK. If they don't, nothing will ever change.

I had the looming energy crisis conversation with my FA 2 years ago and there was no Ukraine to blame it then eh.

9 ( +9 / -0 )

the Australian government has a “trigger” that it can pull in the case of shortages, forcing more gas to be reserved for domestic use. Does the UK government have anything similar?

Sorry, I don't know. But I think the main concern right now is not a gas shortage but simply the price. (But I have read that the UK has very little storage capacity for excess gas.)

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Also, renewable electricity isn't yet stored in any great amount,

Up and coming piston or counterweight wind turbine combos could fix that.

As power is produced one system compresses a piston the other raises a counterweight in high usage or low wind the piston or counterweight are released inturn turning a power generating Turbine creating electricity from power that would have been wasted or needed chemical battery storage.

I hear Scotland is one place where bladeless turbines are in the more advanced stages of production.

-9 ( +0 / -9 )

Kniknaknokkaer

Today 06:21 pm JST

The narrative is that this is all down to Ukraine, it's not. Ukraine has compounded it somewhat but this was on the cards way before Russias invasion. It is just very convenient to blame it on the war as people will ask less questions about the way energy contracts and futures are traded

Only one problem, the prices dont match your claims.

On January 1st crude was $76 a barrel. In February on the possibility of invasion the process slowly went up to $88 a barrel right after the invasion priced started climbing faster and as soon as sanctions were announced the price jumped to $120 a barrel remaining high until lower summer demand and as summer ends the prices are going right back up.

Summer winter price difference in normal but in 5 years the per barrel price prior to the war had barely ever gone over $80 a barrel and the last time we saw $100 a barrel was in 2013.

Go look at the charts

https://tradingeconomics.com/commodity/crude-oil

Look at the sudden rise of oil prices right on cue with the Sanctions

-10 ( +0 / -10 )

blame whoever, whatever. Russia, Putin, Ukraine, blah blah.

Its been 6 months. What is going to be done about it? People and businesses cant just be expected to pay triple the amount or freeze to death or close their shops, right?

-2 ( +4 / -6 )

Capitalism is cool. I think that this evidence of the benefits of privatized utilities and putting profits over people just proves how great the free market is. I hope that several people freeze to death this winter and go without medical help because someone with shares in BP or whatever wants to be even more fabulously wealthy. He’s earned it.

4 ( +6 / -2 )

High-cost energy pubs have a choice of close or £14 a pint.

Thatcher sold off the gas and oil fields back in 2013.

The national grid includes Wales and Scotland.

Eight new nuclear reactos are being built. Johnson signed off on one last week but it won't help the current situation.

UK Power Grid Demand

https://gridwatch.co.uk

Demand 34GW.

Renewables 10GB. 30%.

Carbon Neutral 13GW 38%.

Nuclear 5GW 14%.

Gas 17GW 48%.

Biomas 2G" 6%.

Wind 4GW. 12%

Solar 4GW 12%

Coal OGW.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

UK power demand is about 35GW. Japan power demand 150-200GW.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

I have always defined capitalism in two categories. Consumer based capitalism where there is a plethora of choices for the consumer to choose from, creating a healthy competitive market place among multiple companies.

And then there is corporate based capitalism, where companies run monopolies, duopolies, etc.... and the consumer has extremely limited choice (if any) on whom they can purchase services from. Since corporate based capitalism is based solely on profits for the company (and their greed), the consumer is treated like a walking wallet by the market power of whatever corporation has the largest buy out abilities to wipe out any smaller competition to choose from before they get too big to compete.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

I have always defined capitalism in two categories. Consumer based capitalism where there is a plethora of choices for the consumer to choose from, creating a healthy competitive market place among multiple companies. 

And then there is corporate based capitalism, where companies run monopolies, duopolies, etc.... and the consumer has extremely limited choice (if any) on whom they can purchase services from. Since corporate based capitalism is based solely on profits for the company (and their greed), the consumer is treated like a walking wallet by the market power of whatever corporation has the largest buy out abilities to wipe out any smaller competition to choose from before they get too big to compete.

Capitalism always tends towards monopoly. That’s why laws against monopolies have to be made. I hope this helps.

7 ( +7 / -0 )

Natural monopolies (power plants, energy, etc) should be consumer coops, with all residents in the serviced area voting for directors and bylaws. If they own the raw resource, refinery, and distribution, they can get costs down to $20 per month.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Or £15 per month, since uk

0 ( +1 / -1 )

But how would that enrich the wealthiest 1% even more?

2 ( +2 / -0 )

The NHS most crucial issuance, is bureaucratic mismanagement.

The bureaucracy ingrained within the structure of the NHS makes any independent assessment of NHS operating framework impossible.

As is identifying an opaque definition of what actually constitutes a management levelling structure.

That is before any institution would be able to fully assess published measures of hospital and PCT performance.  

Basically, cutting through the gibberish within the number of national/regional bodies that oversee and regulate NHS services.

The cancerous bureaucracy that infests the clinical commissioning groups/healthcare provider organisations is a case in question.

Look, first look inhouse for efficacy reforms, cut the number of identifiable levels of management.

Before reviewing/tapping the taxpayer for energy price variants.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

This is the government the people of the UK chose and keep choosing. The same people will proudly tell you that the NHS is the best health service in the world.... Really? Compared to where exactly?

-6 ( +0 / -6 )

JapanToday.The NHS, created in 1948 to provide free healthcare and paid out of general taxation, is a cherished British institution.

It is NOT FREE. It is payed by general taxation and our National insurance. It is free at the point of delivery, and patients still pay for a prescription.Depending on the region. And some services are not available. EG tattoo removal and cosmetic surgery.( unless deemed necessary by the consultants.

Mr KiplingToday  09:51 pm JST

This is the government the people of the UK chose and keep choosing. The same people will proudly tell you that the NHS is the best health service in the world.... Really? Compared to where exactly?

I'd say compared to the USA. Remember profits before your op. Shareholders, before dishing out any money, and trolling through your records looking for any pre-existing conditions. The UK isn't perfect. But I know, I won't have some "company" looking out for profits and shareholders first, and some doc on the company pay roll getting a bonus for every patient denied medical care.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

albaleoToday  06:23 pm JST

Sorry, I don't know. But I think the main concern right now is not a gas shortage but simply the price. (But I have read that the UK has very little storage capacity for excess gas.

Spot on .The UK doesn't have the storage tanks, and is creating this mess. I think the Uk decommissioned them years ago, but the companies have been asked to bring them back online.

>

0 ( +0 / -0 )

There are two distinctively separate challenges in front of government.

The provision and cost efficiency's of NHS healthcare services and the total restructuring of the UKs energy sector.

Both will require government intervention on a unprecedented scale.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

My son in the UK has waited more than a year for a hernia op.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Boris Johson promised once the UK left the EU it would free up £300 million per week to use for the health service. £15 billion in one year.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Wallace,he already freed it up ,he sent it to Ukraine

-4 ( +1 / -5 )

It is NOT FREE. It is payed by general taxation 

That’s… that’s literally in the sentence you’re quoting.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

Wallace...

My son in the UK has waited more than a year for a hernia op.

Bring him to Japan or go to Thailand.

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

Wallace,he already freed it up ,he sent it to Ukraine

Unbridled delirium from the basement.

The UK handed energy over to profiteering. This is the root cause of the crisis being faced.

It isn’t just the left who are seeing how essential services and utilities are now in the hands of the wrong people.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

All those ostentatious super wealthy upperclass British but can't keep their own hospitals open or control their sewage.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

UK power demand

Japan power demand

I think you forgot to add the population numbers size and county size comparison between the UK and Japan in your announcement

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Awa no Gaijin

UK power demand

Japan power demand

I think you forgot to add the population numbers size and county size comparison between the UK and Japan in your announcement

The population of the UK is slightly more than half of Japan.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

It is NOT FREE. It is payed by general taxation 

That’s… that’s literally in the sentence you’re quoting.

The "not free" part is not.

On an average salary you would pay roughly the equivalent of 30000yen in social security insurance.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Surely solar and wind and hydro and thermal can take the strain, no?

The UK like all places everywhere should have developed alternative ways to generate electricity long, long ago. And also should have built houses and buildings that did not require so much energy to heat and cool. Things look harsh all over the world, where currently the globe's rulers are comprised of a blend of western predatory 'free-market' capitalism, where citizens are sometimes able to elect their leaders, plus also run by nations with predatory state capitalism run by a dictator. If the BRICS have their way, the globe will be ruled by the dictators running nations with state capitalism where citizens have no say in who their leaders will be. The anti-west/anti-democracy herds want the Putin/Xi Jinping/Kim/Ayatollah axis to rule, and take oil and gas profits for themselves. And maybe that axis will allow little people in the nations that had been their enemies to sniff the fumes of some of the fuel trickled down on them. Not a huge change from the way things are in the west today, but the messages will be sent in different languages.

What happened to North Sea oil and gas?

Good question, I'd say their use and profits were not well managed by the UK fossil barons and others in their caste. Norway, on the other hand seems to have done OK. As the old saw goes: nations get the leaders and government they deserve.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Given the choice between heath care in the UK or in Japan, I am so happy to be living in Japan.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

AntiquesavingSep. 1  06:51 pm JST

Only one problem, the prices dont match your claims.

You have taken an overly simple view there. Early in Feb OPEC (oil cartel) announced they would not be increasing oil production to the level being asked of them to meet the expected jump in demand, as economies rebounded from covid. So prices that were already rising were compounded by the Ukraine crisis.

Gas prices were rising sharply since summer 2021 and as the UK uses a lot of gas for its electricity production as well as home heating, electricity prices were already being affected. The energy price caps were raised by the government in October 2021, way before Ukraine.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Given the choice between heath care in the UK or in Japan, I am so happy to be living in Japan.

My mother tells me not to go back to the UK. She is convinced the NHS is being run down so that it can be sold off. I don't argue with her, what would that achieve?, but large parts of the NHS have already been sold off, so I think the service is deteriorating for other reasons. The biggest one is a lack of concern over public health. This matches the lack of concern over housing, the lack of concern over clean water, the lack of concern over afforable energy bills, and the lack of concern over long working hours. In each of these cases, it is the ordinary person on the receiving end. There is plenty of concern over how much tax high earners might have to pay, and the next PM says it is her most important policy. Cutting taxes was not part of the platform the Conservative Party was elected on in 2019.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

My mother tells me not to go back to the UK. She is convinced the NHS is being run down so that it can be sold off. I don't argue with her, what would that achieve?

If the NHS is owned by private business interests, rather than the people, then the wealthy get more money at the expense of the health and lives of the poor. For more on this, see the US healthcare “system”.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Yes, the NHS's main (remaining) appeal is that it is better than what happens in the US, where health problems force many upstanding people into personal bankrupcy.

I've reread what I wrote and "what would that achieve?" is meant to refer to having political debates/arguements with the lovely old woman who is my mother, not to the selling off the NHS. I don't think the NHS is being run down to set the British public up for acceptance of a move to US style healthcare. Many large hospitals are already in private hands. I think the NHS is being run down because running it properly would involve downward redistribution of wealth and the British government and its backers in the Mail, Express etc. are only interested in wealth being redistributed upwards.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Many Food Banks face closure because they cannot afford the high energy bills for their fridges.

Sixth largest economy in the world.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I've reread what I wrote and "what would that achieve?" is meant to refer to having political debates/arguements with the lovely old woman who is my mother, not to the selling off the NHS. 

I see, I misunderstood, my bad.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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