This week, The Wall Street Journal reported on the surge in Europe’s natural gas and electricity markets after the wind in the stormy North Sea stopped blowing.
In recent weeks, there has been a sudden decrease in wind-driven electricity production off of the U.K.’s shores due to less than ideal weather circumstances. In the wake of this downturn, gas and coal-fired electricity plants were called in to close the gap that wind’s shortfall created. Coupled with this demand, the recovering pandemic boost, and lack of stored fuel, natural gas prices hit all-time highs.
This detrimental event of energy scarcity hit hardest in the U.K. because of how heavily the nation depends on wind energy. The need for infrastructure to provide reliable, affordable energy is on full display. Infrastructure feats like underground, natural gas pipelines could have deterred this crisis from ever coming up. However, a good part of Europe, especially the U.K., now finds itself in a vulnerable, desperate position. This shortcomings of renewable energy show that our current technologies and systems do not have the capacity to abandon traditional fuels. Very soon, the United States could be in the same position as the U.K. if officials stray from commonsense policies and regulations. The abundance of natural gas and crude in North America, paired with investment in new energy infrastructure, can help fuel the economy and support American energy security and national security interests.