The cost could run into billions of pounds, according to a new report from the Royal Academy of Engineering.

While the likelihood of such an outage is low, the report warns that calculating the impact of electricity blackouts is increasingly difficult.

The government says the report is right about the impacts of long blackouts but insists this will not happen.

The report says that the UK has not suffered serious power interruptions for 40 years.

But in that time our dependence upon electricity has increased. Our living patterns have also become more fragmented and complex.

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The likelihood of a serious outage in the UK is very low, but National Grid remains vigilant to the possibility”

National Grid spokesman

That makes it very difficult to establish the overall cost to the economy.


“We have looked at the methods used to quantify the economic risk and the social impact, and found them wanting”, says Dr John Roberts of the report’s working group.

“A nationwide blackout lasting for longer than 48 hours could have a severe impact on society”.

While that scenario is unlikely, Dr Roberts points to the storms and power cuts last winter in the south of England, which left hundreds of thousands of households without power in the run up to Christmas.

He adds that significant adverse political impacts would result from any kind of electricity shortfall.

“Our historic high levels of supply in the UK mean that we are accustomed to the lights always staying on,” he says.



A blackout in the UK would be devastating as explained by this BBC article. The United Kingdom has not suffered any major blackouts for over 40 years. The chance that a large blackout could occur in the UK is very small, but if a blackout were to occur it could wreck major havoc on the mega city. A nationwide blackout that lasts for more than 48 hours would cause irreparable damage and would even have economic consequences. As the demand for energy continues to increase in the UK companies are striving to find new and innovative ways to bring power to the english country.

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