Utility So Energy is calling on the government to immediately increase the support available for customers to help the nation pay for a “once in a generation energy bill”.
With the impending energy price cap increase set to be announced on 26 August, many within the energy sphere are growing increasingly concerned about the welfare of customers who will experience large increases on their energy bills moving through to winter as the price cap is raised again.
The organisation has called on two major changes to be made to support customers. This includes doubling the Energy Bill Support Scheme for all households to £800 and quadrupling the Warm Homes Discount for vulnerable customers to £600.
“The upcoming increase in energy bills this October, due to rises in global wholesale gas prices, is unprecedented and it is simply not feasible for households to bear the brunt of these costs,” said Simon Oscroft, co-founder of So Energy.
Alongside these measures, Oscroft has also called on the government to, ahead of 2023, seriously consider EnergyUK’s proposed Tariff Deficit Scheme.
The scheme proposes government-backed loans should be used to keep bills down throughout next year by covering the increased cost of wholesale energy for suppliers, allowing these to be spread over a much longer period of 10-15 years instead.
“Over half the gas we use is imported and so – as with all commodities – if we don’t pay the going globally-driven price, it will be diverted elsewhere. The question we now face as a nation is what is the fairest and most sustainable way of paying for this energy. That is why the Government needs to step up its support as we have outlined above, ensuring that we can pay this once in a generation energy bill, but in a way that spreads the cost over a long period of time,” concluded Oscroft.
On Monday, Cornwall Insight released its final predictions for October’s Default Tariff Cap showing that a typical household will be paying £3,554 equivalent per year for their energy bills.
This is slightly below previous estimations, which indicated the average household could pay £3,582.
The increase reflects both continued volatility in the wholesale market in the intervening period and a change to the calculation methodology set by Ofgem.