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Lord Frost warns of possibility of rationing as energy crisis worsens
13 April 2022, 09:47
Former Brexit negotiator Lord Frost has warned LBC the UK might need to start rationing energy as the fuel crisis continues to worsen.
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Speaking to LBC's Nick Ferrari at Breakfast, Lord Frost said last week's energy security paper did little to reassure him.
"I wasn't massively convinced that the energy security paper really changed anything much, I think it doesn't deal with the problem," he said.
He warned the Government's ambitious aim to go net zero may not be achieved, which could mean the energy supply needs to be controlled in other ways.
"I think that if we don't have the right amount of power on the grid at some point in the next 10 years then obviously [rationing] is one of the things that could happen," he said.
"I think that will be an extremely bad outcome.
"I don't think the British people will put up with it."
He added: "My worry is that the Government is on a plan where it's not engaging with the trade-offs, it won't be possible to deliver net zero on the timetable they want, and we will end up with rationing and behavioural change."
He also urged the Government not to nationalise the energy grid managers, saying: "I notice the Government has said it would nationalise the grid managers in this paper last week, so the Government will have control over things it doesn't have control over at the moment.
"I think it's really important we don't go down that road.
"I really worry that our current policy, by not investing in secure, reliable power, ie gas, over the next 10 years, risks taking us over into that situation and I don't think last week's paper reassured me that we've got a grip on that."
The UK has been facing a growing energy crisis for months.
The price cap for heating bills soared by 54 per cent at the start of the month, leaving many families facing a decision between heating their homes and buying food.
It is one of the driving forces behind the current cost of living crisis, which is also buoyed by surging inflation and increases in other expenses like council tax, public transport and petrol.
Lord Frost also tackled the latest developments in the partygate saga, that saw Boris Johnson, his wife, and Chancellor Rishi Sunak fined by the Met yesterday for a birthday gathering for Mr Johnson.
Lord Frost said the fact that the Prime Minister had previously told Parliament no laws were broken, as well as the looming possibility of more fines, meant the Government response was "not good enough" so far.
"I think it’s not possible just to say 'that was then, this is now, let’s move on, the world is different' as the Government is trying to this morning," he said.
"I don’t think that’s quite good enough.
"First of all I think the Prime Minister is on record saying to Parliament that all the rules were observed and there were no parties.
"That’s obviously not the case... the second concern is that this is an ongoing process, we don’t yet know what other penalties may be issued and to whom, I think as I suggested this morning if there’s some thought in bringing forward the Sue Gray report I think that will be a good idea."