The government’s energy and climate change policies are helping to reduce increases in household gas and electricity bills, according to a new review.
The Department of Energy and Climate Change’s (DECC) Policy impacts on prices and bill study shows that government policies on energy efficiency and climate change, including installing more energy efficient boilers and insulation into homes, are helping to prevent sharp price increases for consumers.
Whilst some polices have added to household bills, current average savings stand at £64 (a 5% reduction) as a result. By 2020, DECC predicts that this will be £166 lower (a 11% reduction).
The majority of a household’s energy bill is made up of fossil fuel costs, with the second largest cost down to the network, transport and distribution of energy.
“Global gas price hikes are squeezing households”, said energy secretary Ed Davey.
“They are beyond any government’s control and, by all serious predictions, are likely to continue rising.
“We are doing all we can to offset these global energy price rises, and while we have more to do, this new study shows our policies are putting a cushion between global prices and the bills we all pay.
Responding to DECC’s report, Greenpeace policy director, Doug Parr said, “The energy shambles of the last few days has reminded us just how risky our reliance on gas is – both in terms of security of supply and the impact on household bills.
“This report demonstrates that the opposite is true of green policies – they are not causing rocketing household bills and they will not do so in future.
“With the right investment, UK clean energy will only get cheaper. The same cannot be said of gas.”
Meanwhile, Friends of the Earth’s head of campaigns Andrew Pendleton said, “This report confirms that gas price hikes have been the driving force behind our soaring fuel bills and that spending more on clean power and energy saving is a wise investment for our economy – provided it’s done with clarity and vision.
“Harvesting the UK’s huge clean power potential and a comprehensive energy efficiency programme, financed by carbon taxes, is our best bet for tackling climate change and stabilising future fuel bills. Failure to do so will be costly for us all.”
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