Both Newcastle and South Tyneside councils are reportedly considering setting up their own energy companies with the aim of providing less costly energy to local consumers, while providing a return to councils.
The local councils will be following a trend if plans go ahead. Islington Council has done this and Doncaster and Portsmouth councils are about to set up their own energy companies too. The publicly owned electricity companies Robin Hood Energy in Nottinghamshire and Bristol Energy have been launched in the last couple of years. A number of others have also recently started up across the country.
Gateshead Council does not supply the wholesale energy markets but has built an £18m combined heat and power with battery storage scheme, run on a private wires basis. It is already providing services to some key buildings on the south bank of the River Tyne.