Killingholme Generating Stations (Ancillary Powers) Bill [Lords]

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 7:30 pm on 14th January 1991.

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Photo of Mr George Buckley Mr George Buckley , Hemsworth 7:30 pm, 14th January 1991

We are, of course, talking about gas. A Bill dealing with the importation of coal has passed through the House and the consequences for the coal industry of that measure will be considerable. We are talking about an alternative fuel—gas—that will offer security and continuity of supply. Perhaps gas will not provide the guarantees for which some Conservative Members hope.

Some of the gas supplied from the North sea is coming from the Norwegian sector. If power stations are turning towards gas, the increased demand will be met by the Norwegian sector, not the British sector. Conservative Members have tried to talk down the consequences of the Bill, but we must consider the long-term consequences if the Government decide that gas-fired power generation is something that should be expanded. What would be the consequences for gas supply if we started building gas-powered generating stations along estuaries? Given the Gulf crisis, much of our imported supply would come from politically vulnerable areas. In the long term, much of our gas supply might have to come from the Soviet Union, for example, which has had recent experience of—