Western nations see a hike in energy prices as heat waves soar

SoCalGas curtails natgas for power generators in California heat wave


The heatwaves across the northern hemisphere this summer are having knock-on impacts on electricity generation.

Power prices in some western regions of the U.S. rose to all-time highs for the second day in a row as consumers kept air conditioners running on full.

Southern California Gas (SoCalGas) told its electric-generator customers to expect less natural gas supplies to fuel their plants as they consume more of the fuel than usual to keep air conditioners humming during a brutal heat wave.

Meanwhile, operators have reduced the output of Finland’s Loviisa nuclear plant because the seawater used to cool the reactors has become too warm.

And electricity prices in Norway hit a record high for this time of year last week due to lack of rainfall and warm weather limiting hydropower generation.

And in the UK, some solar power operators hit record highs for electricity generation over the past month.

The heatwaves are also affecting food markets, with Reuters reporting that vegetable prices in Japan are up as much as 65 percent and industry groups have warned that the UK food supplies would start to be hit in autumn.

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