One of the UK’s biggest import gas pipelines shut briefly today, causing a record-high spike in wholesale gas prices.
An unexpected technical issue caused the pipeline to be shutdown, and in turn the price per therm of same-day gas rose 50%.
The owner of the pipeline, Interconnector UK, stated that the flow has resumed after being shut from about 7:00 to 11:45. After the pipe opened, prices fell back down.
It is assumed the price spike was fueled by the cold weather and fears that the stores would run out within days, but the DECC was quoted as denying this possibility.
The scare comes at an interesting time, as George Osborn’s announcement to back shale gas exploration was attributed to weening the country off imported gas.