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Green Levies ‘Will Add £200 To Energy Bills’

British Gas claims the cost of funding a switch to green energy and supporting poor families will add £200 to everyone’s bills next year.

The company says it would be a fairer option to shift the cost from bills to income tax or other forms of taxation.

The proposals were outlined by Ian Conn, the boss of parent company, Centrica, who is calling for fundamental changes to bills.

The cost of Government schemes to support a shift away from fossil fuels and boost household energy efficiency is highly contentious.

There is a cost in subsidising the building of new wind farms and solar installations, which are guaranteed high prices for their electricity.

At the same time, energy firms must pay a minimum price for power produced from coal and gas, even if the market price is lower.

Also, companies are required to help poor and vulnerable customers with, for example, free or cheap loft insulation, double-glazing and new boilers.

Discounts on bills are offered to some households with very low income.

The Committee on Climate Change (CCC), which was set up the Government to provide independent advice, estimated these various schemes would add £140 to annual household bills in 2017, rising to £174 by 2020 and £205 by 2030.

Mr Conn called for the switch to renewable energy to be paid for out of general taxation rather than through bills which he said hits the poorest hardest

Earlier this year, Centrica suggested the figure for this year was £145. And Mr Conn now claims it will be an average of £200 per household bill next year.

Centrica argues these costs should be transferred from bills to general taxation, which take account of people’s ability to pay.

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