Zyra's website //// Gas //// Electricity Companies //// Site Index
Why there is no such thing as Economy7 Gas
Economy7 is offpeak electricity, and takes the form of electricity supplied at a discount rate during the off peak hours when there is less demand for electricity. For energy supply at night, electricity is cheaper, so why not have discount offpeak GAS?! "Economy7 Gas" sounds like it makes sense, but there is a good reason why there is no such thing. The reason can be seen by first asking the question "Why is there such a thing as Economy7 offpeak electricity in the first place?".
The answer is to be seen in the fact that electricity can not be stored conveniently(1), and that the traditional power stations are so big that it's difficult to turn them off(2).
1. On the first point, the fact is that every bit of electricity you are using was generated that very minute. Electricity is like a live broadcast, generated and sent and enjoyed LIVE! On the idea of storing it for use later, you might say "what about using batteries?". This works, but you need a lot of rechargeable batteries. It is expensive, and that's even before you think about the AC/DC question, and the technical matters of transformers and the use of high voltage power lines.
2. For various political and economic reasons, power stations were built to be big, and were often a long way from built-up areas. Centralised planning and a nationalised way of thinking produced large scale power stations and long wires on pylons to connect them to the towns and cities. This is in contrast to the distributed power systems which are becoming more fashionable nowadays. One of the problems with big power stations is they have to keep on running 24 hours a day and can't be turned off. The result is that for quite a lot of the time electricity is being produced when it's not needed.
With no reasonable ways to store vast amounts of electricity, and no way to reduce supply when demand is low, the solution is to sell it at a discount during the offpeak hours. That's why Economy7 electricity is available during the seven hours of the night to give you and incentive to think up something clever to do with it.
Now onto the subject of gas. Unlike electricity, it can be stored! Gas can be produced, stored in gasometers / gasholders, and supplied when needed. Therefore there is no need to offer it at discount rates at night, as it will keep. So, no Economy7 gas. However, gas is cheaper than electricity.
For more about electricity and gas, see electric companies, gas suppliers, and energy comparison switch companies such as Energylinx and uSwitch
This is the only page listed which has anything to do with "Economy7 Gas". Therefore, it should appear at Number1 on searches for that. Search engines which fail to do this are at fault. The other thing is, this is as far as I know the only page which actually explains why there is no such thing as Economy7 gas!