The 14 Words

Thursday, 2 January 2014

Are there any limits to the energy companies' greed?

Can Britain's energy companies sink even further in public estimation? You wouldn't have thought it possible, but every day, it seems, brings new evidence of incompetance or overcharging.

Yesterday The Daily Telegraph reported that three of the big six energy companies – npower, ScottishPower, and SSE – have yet to pass on the cuts in so-called green taxes, for which the big Six campaigned so vigorously last autumn, even though ministers assured us at the time that “all of the major energy suppliers have confirmed that they will pass the benefits of this package to their consumers”.

British Gas implemented a rice cut yesterday, while E.on and EDF both said that they moderated their last price increase because of the deal, which cut the "taxes" – mainly in fact a scheme to help poor people better insulate their houses, and thus save energy and money – by an average £50. But, scandalously, npower and ScottishPower have given no firm details of when they will reduce bills or by how much, while SSE has pledged a reduction of about four per cent, but has only undertaken to implement it before the end of March.

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