There may be no solution to the Government’s immediate energy trilemma… the hit will go well beyond the “fuel poor”. I understand that an option on a £15bn plus “Cost Deferral Mechanism” to smooth the spike over is being developed… BLOG:…
No decisions yet - not everyone within Whitehall nor within the energy industry are on the same page, but they will be needed fairly quickly…

Some supporters of PM arguing he will use this Cost Deferral Scheme, to relaunch his premiership
BBC has seen some plans, there are different timeframes, some include taxpayer guarantee, though not necessarily needed, some are adaptations of the last resort mechanism approved by Ofgem for keeping customers of bust companies going, another builds on BoE pandemic schemes…
This is probably the clearest on record exposition of the option, by a backbench MP who has repeatedly won multi billion battles with his Govt, over universal credit, cladding etc:

detail in the blog about Warm Home Discount…

- cash for poorer households is added to rest of bills
- bulk of the scheme (non-“core” as in those of working age) operates with a fixed pot per energy company first come first served
- not designed as mass redistribution mechanism
In France - election year, Govt forced EDF (supplier to vast majority) to cap what wouldve been 35% price hikes at 4%, at cost to EDF of £7 billion.. further 3bn on “energy cheques” to low income households.

Majority state owned EDF share price fell 25%.…

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More from @faisalislam

14 Jan
Coming up @BBCNewsnight after quite a week for party politics, culminating in Number 10 apologising to the Queen @lewis_goodall unearths the guest list for the latest revealed party …. At 2230
Sir Simon Fraser, former leading diplomat told me: “this is not only a question of the behaviour of the PM.. But also civil servants who have been working at the heart of government seem to have been caught up in this series of bad decision making." #Newsnight
“how is it that they have actually been involved in not only attending, but convening these parties? I think that is an issue that is, I’m afraid, going to have to be looked at, and is damaging for the Civil Service,” said Sir Simon to me on #Newsnight
Read 5 tweets
6 Jan
A late happy new year to everyone - coming up on a packed @BBCNewsnight
* cost of living crisis - what can be done via Ben Chu
With the Oxford Professor Dieter Helm who says Govt ignored his solutions…
* Geidt report with Nick Watt
* Kazakhstan
* Don’t Look Up NASA scientist Image
Dieter HElm - rise in prices is not just about global markets - partly down to way British market works, decommissioning of storage of gas at Rough,
Likens Govt response here to like N Rock… says its not “rocket science” if UK Govt had got on with his advise, wouldn’t be crisis
NEW Govt “Cost of Energy” adviser @Dieter_Helm tells me on @BBCNewsnight Government “shelved” his 2017 report addressing intermittency of renewables etc says

- its not “rocket science”…

- “if we’d just got on with that, the cost of energy would not be the crisis it is today”
Read 4 tweets
3 Jan
President Biden’s official White House proclamation lifting the “national security” 25% tariffs against, specifically, steel produced by current EU members (10% for aluminium), that came in to force on Saturday, whilst being left in place for now vs UK……
… language in the Biden proclamation says the US and EU have addressed the “threatened impairment of national security posed by steel imports from the EU”… then goes on to say he considered on natsec grounds whether to lift the tariffs on other countries, eg incl UK, but no.
“I have considered whether it is necessary and appropriate in light of our national security interests to make any corresponding adjustments to such tariff as it applies to other countries. I have determined it is necessary and appropriate, at this time, to maintain…” eg for UK
Read 6 tweets
23 Dec 21

simply superb colleague, fearless & relentless interrogator of truth, infectious enthusiasm for news in every corner of the world & for the development of younger colleagues. Honour to have worked with & learnt from you. gutted not to be able send you off..
Watching #JonSnow on C4N was compulsory in my household as we had our dinner in 90s Manchester…so when I met him at Granada TV conf of young people, and he wrote back to a letter asking for a job encouragingly but politely saying it wasnt “in his gift”…I pinned it by my desk…
When I joined C4N team in 2004, astonishing to find that #JonSnow was in fact entirely & exactly the same person off screen as he appeared on… like a buzzing energy ball, infecting everybody with enthusiasm to go that little bit further, & endlessly interested in all around him
Read 5 tweets
18 Dec 21
So a week ago FCDO officials briefed foreign journalists on record, correctly, that Govt was parking the ECJ red line on NI (there was another briefing to foreign journalists on this in Brussels) … it was then denied in a Cabinet Office statement and a tweet from Lord Frost.
Mail now says Lord Frost resigned a week ago but was persuaded to stay on till January…

Yesterday the row back on both the ECJ that had been denied (and the threat to invoke Article16 this year) was officially announced……
found the notion one set of officials would on record brief foreign journalists with material change in policy, and then domestic journalists had that denied by a different set of officials, v v strange. Not cited in Mail as reason but this is what was happening at time last week
Read 13 tweets
18 Dec 21
“The short doubling times seen with Omicron reinforce the value of going even harder, earlier and wider with any interventions than for Delta.” - Sage advice to Govt - generally grim prognosis in here…
All this aimed at Christmas family gatherings, work parties that are still going on - NB this is Sage advice to Govt, not policy, yet.
Testing just before all gatherings, whole group/ family not attending if one tests positive etc
Significant spike in face mask usage in England (stayed high in Scotland and Wales)……
Read 5 tweets

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