Tuesday, August 9, 2022

One in three could face fuel poverty if energy bills hit £3,250 this October, the charity warns

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National Energy Action forecasts that 8.2 million British households will be living in energy poverty if bills continue to skyrocket later this year

Energy experts Cornwall Insight predicted that if the price cap were raised in October, the average energy bill could reach £3,250 a year, with bills expected to rise by over 60 per cent.

One in three consumers could fall into fuel poverty by October if energy bills rise as sharply as expected, a charity warns.

If that happens, the charity National Energy Action predicts that 8.2 million UK households will suffer from energy poverty – one in three.

That’s a huge increase in just 12 months. In October 2021, the average annual energy bill was £1,271 per year, meaning 4.5 million UK households were living in energy poverty.

To calculate the number, energy poverty is defined as households spending more than 10 percent of their total income on energy.

National Energy Action has also taken into account the £400 energy rebate that the government is giving to all households, which was announced in May.

Experts are urging the government to take action to help those affected by the price hikes.

Adam Scorer, Chief Executive of National Energy Action, said: “Expected prices far exceed previous forecasts. Current financial support will be insufficient as much of this money will be spent before winter sets in. We face the bleakest of winters.

“Energy bills are already unaffordable for millions and millions more will suffer. People are forced into impossible situations. They have to choose between heating and food, are forced into a spiral of debt and are putting their emotional and physical health at significant risk.

“The energy crisis is the urgent priority for a new prime minister. Higher prices and cold weather are inevitable. It’s not dither and delay.”

Nonetheless, help is available for those who are struggling to pay their energy bills.

A number of providers have funds that can help the most vulnerable with their energy bills, while there will be a number of schemes, including the Warm Homes Discount, for which applications will be accepted later this year.

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