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Fuel Bank’s Response To The Price Cap

May 24, 2024

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Price cap falls but energy still unaffordable for millions of people.

In response to Ofgem’s energy price cap announcement, Matthew Cole, Head of Fuel Bank Foundation, said:

The reduction in the price cap from July will provide a small financial benefit, but for millions of prepayment meter customers who face an average annual cost of £1,522, energy will still be grossly unaffordable. Last winter, a record number of people across the UK received support from Fuel Bank Foundation, highlighting that the fuel crisis is getting worse, not better.
The summer months will provide some respite to households struggling to finance their energy needs, but even when the weather is warmer, people still need money on the meter to keep the lights on, cook a hot meal, take a bath or shower, and power essential appliances. And whilst it's still the case that demand for help is greater during winter, we're definitely seeing more people needing our support in summer, such is the current strain on household budgets.
Lowering the price cap will only do so much to ease the financial burden and is by no means the silver bullet needed for solving the energy crisis. If we really want to tackle fuel poverty and the inequality that currently exists in the energy market, the change that's required must be driven by government and the energy industry, through greater support for households at risk of fuel crisis and a comprehensive national energy efficiency programme to retrofit the UK's substandard housing stock.
Sadly, successive governments over the past 20 years have failed to address the problem. The forthcoming General Election is an opportunity for all parties to make this a key priority in their manifestos so that we can end fuel poverty once and for all.