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Wednesday, 14 January 2015

Poorest households hit hardest by energy bill rip-off

Labour’s Shadow Energy and Climate Change Secretary, Caroline Flint, will on today call on MPs to back the Labour party’s motion for fast-track legislation to give the energy regulator Ofgem the power to cut energy bills when wholesale costs fall. She will reveal new figures, based on analysis from the House of Commons Library, which show the scale of the rise in energy bills since 2010 and how the poorest households have been hit hardest by rising energy bills:

  • The average household’s annual energy bill is now £260 higher compared to 2010.
  • The poorest 10 per cent of households have seen their energy bills rise nearly twice as fast as other households, with expenditure on electricity and gas rising by 40 per cent and 53 per cent since 2010.

Commenting Caroline Flint said: "Millions have been ripped off by the big energy firms who never seem to pass on savings to customers, but these figures show that the poorest households are paying the heaviest price for the Tories’ failure to stand up to the energy companies and ensure that the full savings from wholesale cost falls are passed on to all consumers. The next Labour government is committed to making big changes in our energy market: freezing energy prices until 2017 so that bills can fall but not rise, resetting the market and bringing in a tough new regulator to stop the rip-offs in the future. But consumers need action on energy bills now. This can begin today with a vote in the House of Commons on fast-track legislation.

“This zombie Government has had no new meaningful legislation for months. But, with this vote, Parliament can require the government to bring forward fast-track legislation. It would mean we could still do some good before Parliament is dissolved before the General Election.” Ms Flint added.