David Cameron and Ed Miliband spar over energy
bills and green costs.
Three of the 'big six' energy companies - SSE, British
Gas and Npower - have announced price
rises this month. Expect
the other three to follow suit over the next few
Energy companies are blaming a chunk of bill increases
on government measures aimed at supporting energy efficiency and
renewable power: so-called 'green' charges.
So how much do green charges add to energy bills? It
turns out that the power companies and official estimates
Green charges - figures from government and
Ofgem estimated at the end of 2012 that environmental and
social levies added about £107 to consumer bills - making up
eight per cent of an average 2012 annual bill.
for Energy and Climate Change (DECC) set the figure
slightly higher in March 2013. It estimated the levies accounted
for £112, or nine per cent of an average bill.
These figures are the most recent available, but are
also slightly out of date, as they don't account for recent price
But the government's climate advisor, the Committee on
estimates green charges will grow by about £10 over
the next twelve months.
Green charges - figures from the Big 6 power
Energy companies have highlighted the effect of
environmental and social policies when justifying price rises. The
head of SSE called for a "
national debate" on the green agenda - and appears to
have got one.
The three power companies that have recently raised
prices say green measures cost more than official estimates.
Here's are environmental and social costs as a
percentage of the total bill, for each of the power companies that
have announced price rises recently, as well as Ofgem and DECC: