The big story: BP rations deliveries to petrol stations

  • Sep 23, 2021
  • The Telegraph

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Just when you thought the Government was beginning to take steps to resolve the energy crisis, the struggle to supply the things we take for granted in our everyday lives takes a new twist.

BP is being forced to ration fuel deliveries to its petrol stations due to a lack of lorry drivers.

The oil giant is struggling to transport fuel from refineries to its 1,200 UK forecourts, with up to 100 sites believed to be suffering from fuel shortages and a handful temporarily closed.

Exxon Mobil has also issued a statement, saying a "small number" of forecourts it operates for Tesco are also affected by driver shortages.

BP has warned the Government that fuel stocks were "declining rapidly" and the next few weeks would be "really, really difficult".

This graph shows how the number of HGV drivers employed in the UK has plummeted in the last year.

Issues with supply eventually mean the cost of living increases and the Bank of England has warned that the recent surge in energy prices could push UK inflation above 4pc by the end of the year.

It added that these factors posed an "upside risk" to its inflation forecasts from April 2022, suggesting the squeeze on living costs could persist.

The Business Secretary was forced to return to the Commons chamber to answer questions about surging prices for a second time this week.

Kwasi Kwarten used his appearance to "categorically" rule out handing subsidies or grants to larger energy companies as a result of the crisis.

One senior Tory has put forward his own solution - cutting VAT on bills.

It is little wonder that anxieties are growing about a possible winter of discontent, with energy bills rocketing, inflation soaring and a shortage of carbon dioxide threatening food supplies – and perhaps even scuppering Christmas.

Just as Boris Johnson delivered his speech to the UN General Assembly telling the world to "grow up" about the realities of climate change, at home Britons are getting to grips with the reality that moving over to greener energy will cost them more.

Ross Clark argues that Mr Johnson's green policies have had an easy ride so far, but with the spike in global wholesale gas prices threatening to land homeowners with huge rises in bills they are about to face a very stern popularity test.

In the face of a cost of living crisis, Michael Deacon pens the guidance the Prime Minister might offer us to survive a winter crisis.