UK politicians are in utter panic as similarities to the 1970s-style "winter of discontent" of shortages and socio-economic distress could rear its ugly head in the coming months, according to Reuters.
A significant driver in what could very well be a hellacious winter for Brits is soaring natural gas and electricity prices that have already disrupted segments of the UK economy and sent shockwaves through energy markets, chemical producers, and the food industry, among others. Compound this all with labor shortages thanks to Brexit, and the dire situation may worsen.
Some Brits who remember the past worry a winter of discontent could be imminent. Many are facing extraordinary high power bills and sharp food inflation that are eating away at wages, along with shortages of goods at supermarkets.
The primary driver of this chaos is soaring natural gas prices due to declines in Russian flows to Europe, along with a drop in renewable power output. The soaring cost of natgas has pressured chemical firms that use the gas in production to limit or halt operations. One such industry is fertilizer that is a byproduct of natgas. From there, the decline of fertilizer has affected CO2 production, which heavily impacts food supply chains.
People are paying attention to the developments of the energy crisis and its immediate ripple effect across the economy and are taking no chances of being left without food. Many are panic buying food as government officials try to calm everyone down, reassuring everyone the winter of discontent is not upon them.
Already, shelves in some supermarkets are cleared out as people are taking no chance.