Steve warns of fuel poverty threat as Energy Bill receives second reading in Parliament this week

Steve has expressed concern at the news that 300,000 homes may be pushed into fuel poverty this Christmas.


The Fuel Poverty Advisory Group (FPAG), who advises the Government on the issue, has warned that 300,000 homes will be pushed into fuel poverty this Christmas. The Chairman of the FPAG has said that the rising cost of gas and electricity; depressed housing incomes; and public sector cuts are to blame for the squeeze.


The warning comes as the Energy Bill received its second reading in Parliament this week. Critics have claimed that households across Britain will be forced to pay £24 billion towards upgrading Britain’s gas and electricity grids; a key provision of the Bill. That could add £12 a year to the average gas and electricity bill; a move which will hit the poorest, hardest.


The Government has also recently come under fire for failing to tackle the rising cost of energy bills.


Steve said:


It is no surprise that household energy bills are expected to rise throughout 2013, and beyond. The Government have failed to use this opportunity to protect consumers from rapid increases in energy prices; and now Cameron and his Liberal Democrat Energy Secretary are slapping a tax on consumers to pay for infrastructure reform over the next decade.


During my energy saving advice day in October, I spoke with a number of constituents who were incredibly anxious about whether they could afford their energy bills this winter. Whilst reform of the energy market is essential to protect consumers in the long term, the Government has got it totally wrong on this occasion.


“I plan to table a number of Parliamentary Questions in the New Year to tease out the full implications of this Bill.”

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