With the energy crisis engulfing the United Kingdom, Europe, and Asia, there are actions you can do to save energy at home while also increasing your income via a side business. Let’s look at the energy problem and what you can do to help yourself.
Natural gas prices have risen dramatically in the United Kingdom and Europe. China has faced power outages as it reduces its dependence on coal, and sections of the United States are concerned about an impending energy catastrophe.
What Causes The Energy Crisis?
There are several reasons for this, including Brexit, the epidemic, and a determination to fulfill climate change goals.
Changes in Climate
The energy issue has been exacerbated by a commitment to low-carbon fuels, such as gas and renewables. For example, in the United Kingdom, the warm, tranquil summer had not been kind to wind farms.
Gas has become the preferred low-carbon fuel, with several nations switching from coal to gas. Everyone wants gas, and China has been outbidding other nations of supplies. Hyperinflation has resulted from a surge in gas consumption in the United Kingdom, Europe, and Asia. Gas prices in the United Kingdom increased by 298 percent in a month.
The transition to gas and renewables is not the only source of the current energy crisis. Brexit will have a role. Because the UK is no longer a member of the EU, it no longer has the protection of membership to assist it in negotiating cheaper gas prices from EU countries like Norway. Prices have doubled in other European countries, albeit not to the same extent as in the United Kingdom.
Businesses are recuperating after pandemic lockdowns, and governments promise to build their way back to economic development.
The increase in output, especially in heavy sectors such as concrete and steel, puts pressure on the world energy supply. People are struggling to fulfill their energy needs from Australia to India, the United Kingdom, Canada, and just about everywhere else. So much so that the UK and Europe are set to face a miserable winter of food and energy shortages.
The Energy Price Cap protects UK homeowners from catastrophic energy price increases (EPC). Businesses, especially SMEs, are susceptible since many are already fighting to remain afloat. Many firms will collapse if they do not have access to capital to get them through the next months.
On the other hand, the UK government is staying stoic and downplaying the shortages. They don’t want frantic shopping to deplete grocery store shelves. A supermarket run would compound the issue because there is currently a severe scarcity of truck drivers.
Due to increased wholesale prices and the EPC, smaller energy providers in the UK are faltering. Arvo Energy, for example, collapsed despite having a client base of 580,000. Six other small energy providers are in the same boat.
Workers are concerned that their jobs would be lost if firms fail to pay their energy costs. Business is also impacted by the approximately 300 percent increase in natural gas prices. Small corner stores and local retail outlets, such as food and heavy industry..
Consumer confidence and expenditure will plummet until the UK government shows its hand, i.e., how it intends to deal with the energy problem to avoid power outages.
The Game of Blame
Was the energy crisis in the United Kingdom avoidable? Probably. A lack of early investment in green energy, new nuclear programs, and energy storage has been blamed.
Did you know that gas heats four out of every five households in the UK, accounting for half of all energy consumption?
How Do We Proceed?
There are alternatives to using electricity to stay warm. Plus, how to start a side business and save money for your company.
Over the winter, work from home.
There’s no use in heating a huge open-plan office that’s half occupied, so if you can, shut it and have everyone work from home during the winter months. The Energy Price Gap keeps household energy expenditures low, despite higher demand. Give your workers an additional day off to work from home.
When you get cold, you can just put on another layer instead of increasing the temperature on the thermostat. Or better still, get moving.
Did you know when you exercise, your stored energy converts to heat energy? You are your very own heat energy source! 🙂
If you’re an entrepreneur or thinking of a side hustle idea to increase your income, look no further than the current energy crisis.
Here are some products that are sure to be popular in the UK and Europe in the coming months:
- Home exercise equipment – exercise cycles, gym equipment
- Online exercise classes
- Knitting clubs and online tutorials
- Heat pads and water bottles, woolen blankets
Online exercise classes are sure to be popular. Maybe you can create your own and charge a small fee for attendees to join in. Expect all exercise equipment and tools to be popular as a way to get moving and warm up.
If outdoor exercise is more your thing. Reach for that bike you got for the lockdowns. A spin around the streets will up your energy levels and keep you warm over the winter.
Sell your knitting at the local fare and online. See how this UK Instagram follower created a side hustle from knitting snoods for pets.
Is the answer in batteries?
Long-term energy storage batteries will have a role in stabilizing supply, but it won’t be happening shortly.
There are different types of batteries, one that has promise is the cement battery.
Renewables are the answer too, however, no move away from fossil fuels is easy or straightforward.
Shutting off coal and nuclear in favor of renewables is the way forward worldwide as part of saving the planet. However, if there is a lesson to be learned from the energy crisis, it’s to ‘expect the unexpected and have emergency supplies.
Also, Governments and businesses need to work together. They will need robust transition programs that plan for every eventuality that challenges the move away from fossil fuels to cleaner energy sources.