The UK should tap into gas storage facilities on the continent instead of building extra domestic storage, according to a new report.

Consultancy firm Mitie said: “The UK’s only long-range gas storage facility, Rough, will be offline this winter raising concerns over the security of gas supplies during the period.

“Ongoing issues at the facility have left many questioning the UK’s lack of gas storage capacity compared with other large European gas markets.

“Europe is actually oversupplied with storage and that what the UK needs to bolster security of gas supply is greater access to this abundance of storage capacity in Europe, rather than new facilities at home.”

LNG tankers and Norway interconnector

The report said that current infrastructure – including the gas interconnector to Germany and the Balgzand Bacton Line (BBL) to the Netherlands – were being under-utilised.

“When North Sea gas supplies fell sharply in 2000-10, this lost flexibility was replaced by new liquefied natural gas (LNG) facilities and a new pipeline with Norway, rather than new storage facilities,” Mitie added.

“Much of this capacity, namely the LNG import facilities, is currently under-utilised — the Dragon facility for example has not received an LNG cargo since May.”

> Download Mitie's report

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