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Fuel Bank Foundation responds to energy price cap increase

August 13, 2021

Millions of UK households will fall into fuel poverty this winter as result of global price hikes for fossil fuels such as oil and gas.

More than £150 per annum will be added to fuel bills from this Autumn due to rising energy costs, according to Ofgem, the energy regulator.

The organisation protects struggling households with a price cap, which puts a ceiling on what energy suppliers can charge. Ofgem announced on Friday that the threshold for prepaying customers will increase by £153, meaning the average annual fuel bill will rise from £1,156 to £1,309.

For non-prepaying customers on default energy tariffs, bills will rise by £139 to £1,277 a year.

Fuel Bank Foundation (FBF), the charity set up to support people in fuel poverty, says the price cap increase couldn’t come at a worse time.

“A winter without heat, light and hot water is the harsh reality for many families, at a time when household finances are already under pressure. An additional £153 on top of the £96 increase in the spring means bills have gone up by £250, when compared to last winter. Coupled with the end of furlough, and the potential of resulting job losses, the £20 Universal Credit uplift coming to an end and rising inflation, meaning other household basics such as food are also costing more, these will be worrying times for many families..”
Matthew Cole, Fuel Bank Foundation

Fuel Bank Foundation says more needs to be done to help families struggling to pay for fuel this winter. In the last year, more than 71,000 people turned to FBF for financial assistance to help top up their gas and/or electricity pre-payment meters.

“We will continue to subsidise family fuel bills with the Fuel Bank vouchers* we provide but call for the political and societal impacts of living without heat, hot water, light and power to be better recognised.”
Matthew Cole, Fuel Bank Foundation

Fuel Bank Foundation says there is a need for better recognition by government and among policy makers about energy costs and the impact living without energy can have.

Fuel Bank Foundation has devised a list of recommendations, using evidence collected from helping more than 500,000 people who don’t have enough money to top-up their prepayment meter, which, if implemented, will help reduce the risk of self-disconnection, or where customers have already self-disconnected, will provide useful support and guidance.

Fuel Bank Foundation ‘Guidance for Suppliers‘ can be found on our website.