Gas price surge blamed for UK fertiliser factory shutdowns

Just a day after steelmakers reported disruption to production from soaring energy costs, it emerges that work has been suspended at two UK fertiliser plants.

9/16/2021 5:27:00 PM

An American firm has revealed a halt to production at two UK factories because of the surge in the cost of gas that is threatening a wider impact across the economy in the months to come

Just a day after steelmakers reported disruption to production from soaring energy costs, it emerges that work has been suspended at two UK fertiliser plants.

Industry body UK Steel reported on Wednesday that production was being suspended periodically at sites across the country because of"extortionate prices".It complained that manufacturers were facing costs running into the thousands per megawatt hour compared to around"roughly £50 per megawatt hour" in 2020.

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Image:Steelmaking through electric arc furnaces is more environmentally friendly but troublesome when power costs rise. Pic: Liberty SteelThe price surge of recent months has led consumer groups to urgehouseholds to be prepared for rising bills- with fixed tariff deals understood to be rising by the day ahead of the latest price cap on standard variable tariffs (SVTs) coming into force next month.

The rise of £139 is widely tipped by experts to be followed by a further heavy increase during the spring next year as wholesale winter month price contracts show no sign of abating.The price pressures have led to four household suppliers going out of business this month alone as they struggle to afford the cost of raw energy amid

regulatory controlson what they can charge consumers.Sky News has asked CF for a statement on what the production suspension would mean for its workers.A spokesperson for the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy responded:"The UK benefits from having access to highly diverse sources of gas supply to ensure households, businesses and heavy industry get the energy they need at a fair price.

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