Skip to content

Energy Bills ‘To Double In Five Years’ As Customers Are Hit By Green Energy Burden

Energy bills are likely to double within five years as the Government drives a move to green power and building nuclear power stations, it is claimed.

Energy Secretary Chris Huhne will outline plans this week for a major shift in power generation away from fossil fuels such as gas, coal and oil.

The transformation is predicted to cost the nation £200billion, which will be passed on to consumers in the form of higher bills.

The Government will put in place minimum price guarantees, higher than the normal market price, for the electricity generated by new wind farms and nuclear power stations.

This will guarantee it is profitable to build and operate the expensive and controversial facilities. However, it will also mean the price paid by families for their electricity will also have to rise.

Conservative estimates suggest energy bills will soar by 50 per cent over the next 20 years to fund the proposals – taking the annual average bill up by £500, to £1,500 a year. But City experts believe the real figure will be considerably higher.

Research by UniCredit, a Europe-wide banking organisation, says building wind farms and power stations and installing smart meters will send bills rocketing.

It said: ‘According to our analysis, a typical UK energy bill could rise from the current level of £1,000 per year to over £2,000 per year by 2015.

‘As investment occurs, bills could double every five years until 2020, in our view.’ Last week British Gas announced increases in gas and electricity tariffs which add up to almost £200 a year, taking the annual average bill to just under £1,200.

Around £100 of the total relates to a range of green taxes and associated schemes, according to industry regulator Ofgem.

Mr Huhne, who opposed nuclear power when in opposition, is now championing the building of new nuclear power stations.

Yesterday he denied household bills would rise because of the green measures being introduced by the Coalition, describing the predictions as ‘extraordinarily rubbish’.

He told BBC1’s Andrew Marr Show: ‘We’re not going to have the highest prices. That’s absolute nonsense. The reality is we have some of the lowest energy prices in Europe. We could get them even lower.’

Mr Huhne also denied government green measures are pushing up bills, suggesting the driving force for the British Gas price rises was the unrest in the Middle East, which has put up the cost of oil and, in turn, wholesale gas prices.

‘There’s one thing that a British energy secretary cannot do and that is control events in the Middle East,’ he said.

‘If we want to get out from under the volatility of these world markets, the best way is to save energy, make our bills much less sensitive to world market prices and get on in the long-term – get on to clean, secure, green energy sources which don’t bounce around with world oil and gas prices.’

Mr Huhne also urged people to insulate their homes and use price-comparison websites to shop around for the cheapest deal.

Daily Mail, 11 July 2011