21 September 21

Surge in natural gas prices

“The surge in natural gas prices has triggered such a catastrophic chain of events in a very short space of time that it has been likened to a Black Swan event referencing Nassim Nicholas Taleb’s theory in his 2007 book of the same name.   
  
Black swan events are characterized by their extreme rarity, severe impact, and the widespread insistence they were obvious in hindsight. Reflecting on just one consequence of the soaring prices - the closure of several large fertilizer plants across the UK and Europe that seems likely to cause severe disruption to an already beleaguered UK food industry, heavily dependent on the carbon dioxide they generate – might cause you to reflect that the Black Swan analogy is sound, but it’s less obvious how this could all have been obvious with the benefit of hindsight?  
   
Either way, no one could reasonably argue that the need to demonstrate increased domestic resilience hadn’t heightened since the UK’s exit from the EU or that there weren’t compelling benefits to our economy and our warming planet of a lessening reliance on natural gas.  
   
The Government has moved at impressive pace to intercede with Business Secretary, the Rt Hon Kwasi Kwarteng promptly meeting with representatives from the National Grid, OFGEM and energy suppliers. Assuring us all that some kind of order will soon be restored will doubtless be a priority in the days to come.  
   
Triple Point has long developed strategies that seek to address some of the biggest challenges we face as a society including several of those that have been brought sharply into focus by recent events. We have made investments in vertical farming technologies that enable us to grow food crops sustainably and have partnered with the Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy in the delivery of the £320m Heat Network Investment Project which provides grant and loan funding for networks that will often use locally-generated sources of clean, affordable, renewable energy rather than connect to our national, natural gas grid.  
   
Lastly, by investing in energy efficiency projects through Triple Point Energy Efficiency Infrastructure PLC we lessen the reliance on gas further still because the cheapest most sustainable fuel is the one you never need to use.” 
 
Ken Hunnisett is Project Director at Triple Point Heat Networks Investment Management
Read the Guardian article 
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