Tuesday evening news briefing: Dire new energy forecast

·7-min read
Your evening briefing from The Telegraph
Your evening briefing from The Telegraph

Good evening. With green spaces turning brown in exceptionally dry weather (such as Blackheath, below), another hosepipe ban is coming. Yet thoughts are turning to winter with dire new energy price fears.

Evening briefing: Today's essential headlines

Hosepipe bans | Another day, another extreme weather alert. As the Met Office issued a four-day amber warning for heatwave conditions in parts of England and Wales, Thames Water announced it is planning to introduce a hosepipe ban "in the coming weeks" in the face of the long-term forecast. Check on the details of restrictions in your area. The UK is not alone in experiencing water shortages. Our correspondents based around Europe report on the "most serious" drought on record.

The grass is no longer green on Blackheath, in south east London - Aaron Chown /PA
The grass is no longer green on Blackheath, in south east London - Aaron Chown /PA

The big story: New dire energy price cap warning

In the end, it could be even worse than had been feared. Today saw the release of a new forecast for the energy price cap – and it does not make for comfortable reading.

Experts predict that the figure will hit more than £4,200 in January. In a new dire outlook for households, Cornwall Insight said bills are set to soar to around £3,582 in October – from £1,971 today – before rising even further in the new year.

Ofgem is set to put the price cap at £4,266 for the average household in the three months from the beginning of January. The energy consultancy said this is around £650 more than its previous forecast.

Consumer expert Martin Lewis described the latest forecasts as "tragic", saying they will leave many households "destitute".

It comes as suppliers are being allowed to charge more upfront this winter so that they can quickly recoup the costs of buying energy in advance – a practice known as hedging.

As Britain rushes to wean itself off Russian energy, British Gas owner Centrica today inked a £7billion deal to import liquefied natural gas from the US.

The company signed an agreement with Delfin Midstream to buy LNG from America's first floating export facility off Louisiana.

While deliveries are not expected to start until 2026, James Warrington reports that it highlights how suppliers are securing extra imports after Vladimir Putin's gas cuts sparked fears of energy shortages this winter.

The next PM's move

There is still almost a month in the race to become Britain's next Prime Minister, but the first major crisis for Number 10 is already clear.

Cataclysmic costs are on the way for households and the Bank of England expects it to force the UK into a recession that lasts for more than a year.

Contenders Liz Truss and Rishi Sunak are under pressure to announce more plans to help balance the domestic books. But what more could – and what more should – the nation's next leader do to help prevent an energy catastrophe?

From pushing up incomes to slashing green tape, deputy economics editor Tim Wallace examines all the options.

To cap or not to cap

France's Emmanuel Macron has smothered his country's cost-of-living problem by capping electricity bills at 4pc by state dictate, while gas prices have been frozen at the October 2021 level until the end of this year under a "tariff shield". Should the UK go down this road as a short-term emergency measure in order to break the vicious circle of rising prices and wage demands? Jeremy Warner writes in praise of Mr Macron's policy, while Ambrose Evans-Pritchard argues that the last thing we need to fight energy poverty is Soviet price controls.

Comment and analysis

Around the world: Why FBI raid is a gift for Trump

Having the FBI raid your home is never a good thing, but for Donald Trump it may prove a blessing in disguise. The former US president has not seen such an outpouring of support from senior Republicans in a long time and the incident looked set to light a new political touch paper that could propel him to the party's nomination in 2024. In his analysis, US editor Nick Allen explains how Mr Trump is now – in the eyes of many Republicans who were shying away from him – the victim of an egregious attempt by Democrats to politicise the justice system.

Monday interview: 'The Russian soldier who raped me was the same age as my son'

Viktoria Martsyniuk tells Danielle Sheridan, our defence editor in Kyiv, how therapy and a rescue dog are helping her face the future, six months after she was brutally assaulted by a young Russian soldier. Read the interview

Viktoria Martsyniuk in Kyiv - Paul Grover for The Telegraph
Viktoria Martsyniuk in Kyiv - Paul Grover for The Telegraph

Sport briefing: Serena Williams to retire from tennis

Serena Williams, 23-time major champion and all-time sporting great, has announced her retirement from tennis – and hinted that her final appearance could be as soon as the upcoming US Open. Read her full statement. Meanwhile, Toni Minichiello, the prominent coach who guided Jessica Ennis-Hill to Olympic glory, has been banned for life over years of "sexually physical behaviour" with athletes.

Editor's choice

  1. 'Poshstock' | What it was like with 10,000 Sloanes in glitter and top hats

  2. Bootleg boom | Why film and TV piracy is back in a big way

  3. Grey area | The double standards around men dyeing their hair

Business briefing: New best-buy account launches

Savers can finally enjoy some of the benefits of rising interest rates following the launch of a new best-buy account. Banks have been widely criticised for failing to pass on the Bank of England's six consecutive rate rises since December onto savers – despite the fact that they have been quick to increase mortgage rates. As Melissa Lawford reports, Zopa Bank has today raised the rate on its easy-access savings account. In less positive news, Jessica Beard explains why soaring inflation and falling markets are destroying the dreams of early retirement for many workers.

Tonight starts now

Grease is the word | After the death of Olivia Newton-John aged 73, it feels like the perfect time to settle down in front of her most famous film, Grease. Britain was on the verge of the winter of discontent when the sunny optimism of Grease – a film version of the Broadway hit – lit up our cinemas in 1978. In this review from our archives, Elena Seymenliyska writes in praise of the musical vision of how life could be. And look back at the singer's life and glittering career in pictures.

Three things for you

And finally... for this evening's downtime

Greek island lost to time | The wild isle of Karpathos – with its brightly attired women, pirate history and arranged marriages – exists in a time warp. Heidi Fuller-Love has the fascinating story of the unique mountain village where women are said to rule the roost.

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