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Back to the Dark Ages: National Grid raises the spectre of blackouts this winter

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posted on Sep, 26 2008 @ 05:08 AM

Back to the Dark Ages: National Grid raises the spectre of blackouts this winter

Homes could be plunged into darkness this winter as the nation faces the shocking prospect of power cuts.

The warning, following the release of grim industry figures yesterday, will dredge up memories of the last electricity crisis in 1974.

Then, households had to manage with candles, factories were put on short-time and TV broadcasts ended at 10.30pm.
(visit the link for the full news article)

posted on Sep, 26 2008 @ 05:08 AM
I remember those power cuts very well. At the time, I thought they were great as it brought along a break in the daily grudge that everyone was feeling. It forced many families to have to sit and talk to each other instead of being blinded, deafened and dumbed-down by TV or, now, computers and game consoles.

As ever, the news focuses on the costs to bill payers and to governments and how bills will very possibly be rising. All very well for those in control, but what about all those who are in real need for Electricity, like the elderly or the ill.

The pockets and wallets of any nation usually outride every financial storm that comes along. Yes, we struggle, but times turn and things brighten up.

But for those who are in real need may possibly die due to extreme cold or not having power for a ventilator or other life giving device that needs power. It is these people that pay the ultimate price due to an inability to get organised in the first place.

When are we going to sort all this out? When are we really going to get involved in finiding new ways of getting powr to everyones homes, cheaply and quickly.

It's with news like this that the world wakes up a little but, as ever, too little, too late.
(visit the link for the full news article)

posted on Sep, 26 2008 @ 05:28 AM
it dont matta to buying a nat gas generator to plug into my home line...and i got nat gas heat...shouldn't be a problem for folks who are prepared

posted on Sep, 26 2008 @ 06:34 AM
reply to post by midnightbrigade

Luckily, you are aware of what's going on, but many are not. Many will not know what will be coming until it is right on top of them.

Many others would love to be prepared but just can't afford it.

Then there will be those who may have the cash, may be aware, but are just not physically capable of getting up to do something.

posted on Sep, 26 2008 @ 07:00 AM
About time.
People might realise just how tits-up this country has gone.

On the other hand, I reckon it'd be quite fun if that happened. I can live without electricity, I spent a good couple of weeks living in a tent just last month and it was great. No TV, no computers, getting the torch out to go for a slash when it was dark.. it was a right laugh, best thing all year!

Bring it on!

posted on Sep, 26 2008 @ 07:08 AM
reply to post by Extralien

Not sure if anyone noticed, but this story was covered with a much less alarmist slant to it by the BBC. They mentioned nothing about this winter, just that if demand kept creeping up and plans to decomission aging plants went ahead whilst there are no clear plans to build any more, then we might have an energy crisis in 5 years as 1/3rd of the generating capacity is due to be decommissioned by 2020.

Not the same as "this winter". Typical Daily Mail hype and tripe.

The UK will experience prolonged power cuts in about five years unless urgent action is taken now, a report warns.

It said a third of generation capacity was due to be decommissioned by 2020, but was not being replaced fast enough.

The report, by nuclear supporting Fells Associates, said new reactors would not be ready in time, and questioned spending on renewable energy.

I work for a company that has close dealings with the National Grid (details of which I cannot divulge too much).

Total UK domestic demand is only 30% of capacity, the rest being used up by indurstry (you know, keeping the PC's and lights on in offices at night, that sort of thing).

In the event of there being a power crisis, domestic supply supercedes industrial supply and many industries have back up generation anyway, which the Grid can actually call upon to add power back into the network. This is called STOR (Short Term Operational Reserve) and although only meant to be a temporary stop gap in the event of a sudden loss of generating capacity or a spike in demand, it is one of the many tools available to ensure domestic supply.

Basically, this shouldn't have been a problem, but the Government has dithered so long about how to generate power it's made critical issue where there shouldn't have been one.

It's cutting it fine in relation to bringing new plants online and taking others off. I expect they'll fudge it and "extend" the life times of some older plants while they obfuscate more and blame the Tories.

EDIT: Checked with my colleaguies at the Grid and total "load factor" of the UK is currently around 70% of capacity, so currently there is no need to panic.

[edit on 26/9/08 by stumason]

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