Commenting on price increase announcements from energy suppliers, Energy and Climate Change Minister Greg Barker today said:
“This is very unwelcome, and I know lots of families who are struggling to balance their budgets will be very disappointed and concerned by these price rises. That’s why Government is taking action on a number of fronts: short-term measures to help people struggling with bills this winter, long-term measures to reform the market and bring in more competition.
“What we need is action. We are bringing in the Energy Bill this winter that will reform the markets, it will be the biggest shake-up since privatisation, in addition, we are giving extra teeth to the regulator Ofgem.
“We are also rolling out the Green Deal this winter. This is the biggest ever energy efficiency programme, that will help millions improve their homes so they are better insulated. This is probably the most ambitious energy efficiency programme in Europe, if not the world.
“I am determined to help families, students in digs, pensioners, everyone, to benefit from the Green Deal, which will provide a long-term solution to people so they are less dependent on energy companies.
“We have also brought in the Warm Home Discount, which will provide support to around two million people a year, including an extra £130 off their energy bills for well over a million low income pensioners this winter.
“On top of this, if people are worried about heating, they can call Warm Front. And, if they want to find a better tariff, they can call the Energy Saving Advice line. This is run by Government to give consumers impartial advice.
“As well as helping the most vulnerable, with a cash addition this winter, we are also moving to fundamentally reform the energy sector, to unleash a huge wave of investment in cleaner forms of energy generation which are better for the environment and better for consumers as they will protect them from spiralling costs of wholesale gas”.