Gas and food threat is competence test of Ministers – The Yorkshire Post says

THE need for joined-up government and decision-making extends beyond levelling up; it is equally applicable to growing concerns about energy policy.

The Government has been holding talks with energy industry representatives over concerns about a rise in wholesale gas prices.

For now, families have to take Kwasi Kwarteng, the Business Secretary, at his word after he said that there was no “cause for immediate concern” over the supply of gas in the UK despite contrary suggestions.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

Yet the fact that he spent the weekend ensconced in talks with energy firms was indicative of mounting problems at a time when householders are bracing themselves for double-digit rises in fuel prices.

Business Secretary Kwasi Kwarteng has been holding talks with energy industry representatives over concerns about a rise in wholesale gas prices.

And, if this wasn’t sufficient cause for consternation, a shortage of carbon dioxide gas threatens to compound problems in the food industry amid renewed warnings of empty supermarket shelves in the run up to Christmas.

With CO2 essential to the humane slaughter of livestock, extending the shelf life of products and the cooling systems of refrigerations, Ministers can expect sympathy to be in short supply unless they respond decisively.

Coupled with a chronic shortage of HGV drivers, and other day-to-day consequences of Brexit that are only coming to light now as the country returns to some semblance of normality after the Covid pandemic, the onus is on Ministers with responsibility for business, energy, transport, food, Brexit and security policy to pull together as a team and follow the example that Mr Kwarteng is attempting to set.

If not, disruption to food and energy supplies risks leaving even more people questioning the Government’s competence.

Support The Yorkshire Post and become a subscriber today. Your subscription will help us to continue to bring quality news to the people of Yorkshire. In return, you’ll see fewer ads on site, get free access to our app and receive exclusive members-only offers. Click here to subscribe.