13th November, 2013

Reforms to make the energy market competitive and work in the public interest unveiled as part of the Annual Energy Statement 2013

Consumers will find it easier to switch and get the best deal, forcing energy companies to compete much more actively for their custom, as part of reforms to ensure the energy market is truly competitive and working in the public interest, Energy and Climate Change Secretary Edward Davey announced today.

Mr Davey announced plans to make switching simpler and quicker, and a new probe into energy firms’ accounts, to make them more transparent on profits and prices, as well as increasing penalties for market manipulation and regularly checking that the market is working properly in today’s Annual Energy Statement.

Mr Davey said:

The energy industry needs to change to put consumers in control. That means making it easy for people to change supplier to save money, it means regular market assessments to check their behaviour, and it means tougher penalties for market manipulation and putting an end to opaque finances.

We want to push energy companies to make switching quicker and easier – because consumer action can force suppliers to change their ways. Bills are being re-designed through Ofgem’s retail market reforms to give people the information they need to make switching easy – and we are taking direct action through the Big Energy Saving Network to bring first hand help to those vulnerable people who find switching difficult.

Energy companies need to know that any wrongdoing will be uncovered and dealt with. That’s why the regulators are going to carry out annual competition reviews, to make sure the energy market is operating properly. We are going to consult on increasing the sanctions for manipulation of the energy markets, so that they carry criminal penalties for the first time.

Mr Davey set out a number of new measures aimed at giving consumers more control:

57 social landlords across Great Britain have been awarded a share of £5 million to get more renewable heating into the homes of tenants.

57 social landlords across Great Britain have been awarded a share of £5 million to get more renewable heating into the homes of tenants, Energy and Climate Change Minister Greg Barker has announced today.

The 57 winners will use the cash to install a range of renewable heating kit in social homes. The landlords have been awarded the funding from a second round of this year’s Renewable Heat Premium Payment (RHPP) Social Landlords competition.

Energy and Climate Change Minister Greg Barker said:

“The coalition is absolutely determined to help hard working families with the rising cost of living.

“Renewable heating kit like heat pumps and biomass boilers can help keep homes warm and bills down, so it’s great that social landlords will be getting cash to help get over 2,100 renewable heating technologies into the homes of their tenants.”

Applications were received from a number of social landlords wanting to install different technologies. The winning projects are:

East Midlands (5)
East Midlands Housing Association
Longhurst & Havelok Homes
North West Leicestershire
South Holland District Council
Spire Homes

East of England (6)
Colchester Borough Homes
Havebury Housing Group
Norwich City Council
South Cambridgeshire
Tendring District Council
Welwyn Hatfield

London (2)
Old Ford Housing Association
English Rural Housing Association

North East England (2)
Northumberland County Council
Teesdale Housing

North West England (9)
City West
Helena Partnerships
One Vision Housing
Places for People
Progress Housing Group
Ribble Valley Homes
Two Castles
Weaver Vale Housing
Wigan & Leigh Housing

Scotland (4)
Aberdeen Housing Partnership
Ayrshire Housing
Highland Council
Link Group Limited

South East England (8)
Amicus Horizon
Golding Homes
Island Cottages
Moat Homes
Red Kite Community Housing
Southern Housing Group
Town & Country Housing
Wealden District Council
Wokingham Borough Council

South West England (8)
Coastline Housing Limited
Magna West Somerset Housing
Merlin Housing
Selwood Housing 1
Selwood Housing 2
Swindon Borough Council
Teign Housing
Yarlington Housing Group

Wales (6)
Charter Housing
Flintshire County Council
North Wales Housing
Tai Ceredigion
Vale of Glamorgan
Wales & West Housing

West Midlands (5)
Bromford Housing
Cannock Chase District Council
Shropshire Rural Housing Association
Trident Housing
Wrekin Housing

Bids were reviewed by the Energy Saving Trust (EST) and assessed by a panel chaired by the Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) which included representatives from the Scottish and Welsh Governments. Bids were scored on a range of criteria including value for money, fuel to be replaced, additional energy efficiency measures to be installed and plans to work with local communities.

The winning projects offer the best value for money and mix of renewable heat technologies to be installed. Projects will need to be completed and claims made to the EST by 30 June 2014.

Source: Gov.UK

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