UK and France move to ‘close cooperation’ on energy as cross-Channel power crunch looms

The United Kingdom and France are looking at using each other’s electricity supplies this winter, a report in the Telegraph has claimed. The move has raised the possibility of a power crunch affecting those on either side of the Channel if there is a simultaneous demand surge.

France is usually considered a major power exporter to Britain and other member states in the European Union.

However, outages on its nuclear fleet ensured it turned into a net importer during the first half of 2022.

France’s grid operator RTE revealed it will require “close cooperation” with other nations over electricity supplies in its winter outlook report which was published on Wednesday.

There are three cables which trade electricity across either side of the Channel.

They also have a total capacity of 3GW, according to the Telegraph.

RTE’s report comes after Britain’s National Grid said it is hoping to benefit from imports from the continent.

In a forecast published in July, the National Grid said it would need ample power supplies this winter assuming Britain can rely on power from Europe as in previous years.

However, a surge in demand in both countries could lead to extremely high power prices in the UK.