Ecotricity, an independent energy supplier, has reduced the price of gas for all its customers by 6.1%, providing the biggest recent cut in the industry. The company, which specialises in building windfarms and supplying low-carbon power, will make the reduction on 1 May 2015 in a move designed to cut about £42 a year from typical domestic bills.
A new report 'Show Some Warmth' discusses the impact of energy debt on children.Further information and resources are accessible from The Children's Society website here.
ScottishPower has become the third major gas supplier to announce a price cut, with the news it is to reduce prices by 4.8% from 20 February 2015. Customers on the standard tariff will make an average saving of £33 on their annual gas bills as a result.
British Gas has become the second of the Big Six energy suppliers to cut household gas prices, reducing its prices by 5 per cent. The UK's biggest domestic energy supplier, part of the Centrica group, said the cut would reduce the typical household's annual energy bill by £37.
NEA holds regular Fuel Poverty Forums throughout England and Wales - these events are designed to bring together key partners and stakeholders to discuss issues and practical solutions to tackle fuel poverty.
To check when the next Forum is taking place and to book your free place, see here.
As part of your grant, each Champion is required to collect a minimum of two case studies per project. To aid this process, we have produced the following two templates to help gather the necessary information from consumers helped and/or frontline workers trained through your BESN project. The exact content and detail that you include in these templates will of course vary on a case by case basis.
Please submit your completed case studies to the BESN mailbox by 20 March 2015.
NEA's Welsh Office has produced an informative bulletin focussing on fuel debt issues. It is available here.
Switching energy supplier could save many people around £300 – and some could save more – off their bills, and it’s now quicker to do than ever before.
In October 2013 Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change Ed Davey challenged industry to cut switching times dramatically. New processes are now in place to get households switching in half the time, so people can benefit from increased competition and trimmer bills sooner this New Year.
Energy companies have cut the time it takes to switch between suppliers to 17 days, down from 5 weeks last year. Together with savings of around £300 for many – or more for a first-time switcher – and new competitive tariffs on the market at under £1000 a year, now’s the time to shop around for a good deal.
Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change Ed Davey said:
"We’ve introduced more competition in the energy market and made it much quicker for people to switch energy supplier.
“Industry is delivering on my challenge so now my challenge is for more consumers to take advantage. There’s never been a better time to shop around, switch and save money faster than ever before.
“The job is not done for energy suppliers. They must offer 24 hour switching for consumers as quickly as possible.”
Throughout 2014, 3.1 million people shopped around and switched for a better deal on their gas bills, according to Energy UK statistics.
Industry body Energy UK is responding to Ed Davey’s challenge – 9 of Energy UK’s suppliers are now offering switching in 17 days. Lawrence Slade, chief executive of Energy UK, said:
"This is fantastic news and yet another example of energy companies making it easier for customers to engage with their supplier.
“There are now twenty six suppliers in the market and recently we saw data showing the price of the average tariff is falling. With quicker switching we urge customers to take full advantage of the great deals on offer."
But it doesn’t stop there. Smaller independent suppliers have confirmed that they are on track to introduce faster switching in 2015 as well. The new changes mean that suppliers don’t have to wait for the 14 day cooling off period before they begin the switching process. Instead the process begins on day one when a customer decides to switch, while statutory rights are protected so switchers can still cancel at any time within those 14 days.
Energy regulator Ofgem worked closely with suppliers to approve the new system. Ofgem Chief Executive Dermot Nolan said:
“Ofgem reforms have made it much easier to pick out cheaper deals. And now that switching times have been halved, there has never been a better time to shop around using the independent advice available at www.goenergyshopping.co.uk.
“We’ll continue to work with Government and industry to make next-day switching a reality and ensure that the full benefits of the smarter market are realised.”
This is one step closer towards Energy Secretary Ed Davey’s vision for 24 hour switching, which is supported by the roll-out of smart meters. The programme is set to bring a net benefit of £6.2 billion to the UK economy through energy savings and by cutting back on delivery costs, such as the need for home meter readings.
Please also see a Faster Switching Q&A document here.
In addition to uploading your report to SurveyMonkey, please remember to keep a completed copy for your own records.
The BESN Team
My Energy Credit helps people who've moved or switched claim money back that may have been left behind with their old supplier. No matter how long has passed, legitimate claims will always be refunded. The average credit balance is around £50.
To find out more about the claims process, see their website.
A total of 81 per cent of low income families in the private rented sector struggled with their energy bills in the last year, with children’s health and wellbeing harmed by strained family finances, national charityTurn2us has found. See further information here.
The Birmingham and London BESN Networking and Information Sharing Workshops have taken place this week with an excellent number of Champions and Volunteers in attendance! The final workshop is still to take place in Manchester on the 20th January.
Presentations and details from the workshops will be available soon.
Thanks to everyone who came and shared their feedback and experiences of BESN delivery!
E.ON has today announced it will reduce its standard gas price by an average of 3.5% with immediate effect. This is equivalent to two weeks' gas use or £24 off an annual gas bill. Read more here
This online guide from uSwitch will explain how to find out if consumers are in credit to their energy supplier, how to get energy credit refunded and how to make sure bills are accurate in the future.
A new report has been published by Policy Exchange entitled Warmer Homes: Improving fuel poverty and energy efficiency policy in the UK.
Following the Fixed-term Parliaments Act 2011, the date of the next general election has been set as 7 May 2015. Here is the expected timetable for what will happen during the campaign and after polling day, when the newly elected MPs take their seats and Members of the Lords return.
NEA will be coordinating Fuel Poverty Awareness Day on the 27 February. The purpose of the day is to raise awareness of the problem of fuel poverty and the solutions available. Further details will be available on the NEA website soon.
Alongside the Monthly Activity Summary for January, each ‘Champion’ led project is required to complete this Interim Report, covering Big Energy Saving Network activity. This report will cover information relating to your overall project delivery across October 2014 – January 2015.
Reporting this month is therefore split into two sections:
• the first relates to monthly activity in January 2015
• the second summarises the overall impact of your project during the first half of the programme delivery cycle, drawing on reporting information you will have collected from attendees at events. Similar information will be requested in the final report in mid-March.
For clarification, this report should record information relating to an individual Champion and their BESN project.
You will need to submit this report to DECC electronically via SurveyMonkey. The new link for SurveyMonkey will be circulated shortly.
It is important that you also keep a completed copy of the information submitted for your own record.
The BESN Team
The final agenda for the BESN Networking and Information Sharing workhops is here. The Team is really looking forward to meeting you all at these events over the coming weeks!
For those who are able to attend, please see the joining instructions below:
13 January - Birmingham
14 January - London
20 January - Manchester
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