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`Brexit' Risks $700 Million Shock to Energy Bills, Rudd Says

  • Minister says U.K. better able to `force Putin's hand' in EU
  • EU nations invested $64 billion in U.K. utilities in 2014
Construction cranes stand on the site of a new multi-fuel plant as cooling towers emit vapor at Ferrybridge coal fired power station, in Ferrybridge, U.K., on Tuesday Nov. 26, 2013. SSE Plc, the U.K.'s second-biggest energy supplier, pledged to curb increases in customer bills if the government cuts environmental levies that push up tariffs.
Photographer: Chris Ratcliffe/Bloomberg
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A U.K. vote to leave the European Union might force gas and power bills up by 500 million pounds ($700 million) a year, Energy Secretary Amber Rudd said, warning that a “Brexit” would threaten Britain’s energy security.

“If we left the European internal market, we’d get a massive electric shock because U.K. energy costs could rocket,” Rudd said in a speech in southeast England Thursday. “However you look at it, an internal energy market helps to guarantee our energy security, which is the bedrock of our economic security. I’m not willing to play fast and loose with either.”