Natural Gas in UK and Scottish Energy Policy

Turner, Karen and Lappin, Mark (2017) Natural Gas in UK and Scottish Energy Policy. University of Strathclyde, Glasgow.

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This paper considers the current and future role of natural gas in the UK and Scottish energy mix. The aim is to identify and highlight fundamental perspectives that must be considered in designing energy policy going forward. The paper considers the current energy mix and the role and presence of gas alongside other energy sources, both renewable and non-renewable. It then sets the discussion in the context of natural gas production in the UK before discussing the role of gas in the energy costs faced by consumers, with particular attention to the important policy concern of fuel poverty. Attention then moves to climate policy as a second key policy concern, but one where the impact of gas production and use in Scotland and the UK must be set in a global context. The paper concludes that gas must continue to play an important role in the energy mix of Scotland and the UK, with a potential continued role in the context of ‘game changers’ such as hydrogen and Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS). The main question is then whether the gas we use should be produced at home or abroad.