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Power failures an increasing risk for UK businesses, Centrica warns

Centrica has warned that UK businesses are at an increased risk of power-related failures that could endanger employees and profit margins. 

In Centrica’s new ‘Resilience Report’, the firm looked to measure the business impact of energy-related failures. It surveyed more than 300 businesses in various industries across the UK and Ireland in order to obtain a “true picture” of the challenges posed by a “lack of energy continuity”. 

The survey was launched for Centrica to better understand the steps businesses are taking to address their energy security, uncovering what it considered to be a “poor state” of energy resilience in the UK today.  

Businesses surveyed by Centrica stressed that the power failures did not have to be long to have a lasting impact on their operations. One in ten of those surveyed said that just one hour’s downtime would be enough to have a “catastrophic” impact on their operation. 

Power failures were also linked by businesses to lost inventory, equipment damage and the endangerment of employees. Eleven per-cent of those surveyed said employees had been endangered by power-related failures, a figure Centrica decried as “unacceptable”. 

Of greater concern however was the expectation that energy-related failures would continue. More than 80% of those surveyed said they had experienced at least one power failure in the last year, with more than half (52%) considering it likely the same would occur again. 

These failures, Centrica said, had myriad causes. Increasingly frequent and destructive natural disasters, a result of climate change, pose a threat to energy infrastructure while national power systems remain a target of cybercriminals. 

In response, Centrica has stressed the need for businesses to develop an energy resilience strategy to both protect themselves and their employees. It said there was a “direct correlation” between businesses with a mature resilience strategy and positive business outcomes, as detailed in the report

Clean Energy News readers can download the full edition of Centrica's Resilience Report from our resource library, here.