Coffee House

Time to switch energy companies say ministers

17 March 2014

Both coalition parties remain scarred by the political potency of Ed Miliband’s pledge to freeze energy prices. They are determined to do what they can to stop this issue gaining salience again.

So, it is telling that Ed Davey and Michael Fallon have both personally signed up to The Big Deal, a new initiative designed to gets consumers cheaper energy bills through bulk buying. Their decision to sign up shows how it is politically imperative to be seen as on the side of the customer rather than the producer when it comes to energy. (It is also testament to how well connected the campaign is in Westminster.) No politician wants to look like they are defending the big six energy companies at the moment.

The question is how best to end the market dominance of the big six energy companies – through consumer power or state action. If it can be shown that the market can drive prices down then Miliband’s price freeze pledge will have less appeal than it does now. ​

Give the perfect gift this Christmas. Buy a subscription for a friend for just £75 and you’ll receive a free gift too. Buy now.

Show comments
  • 2trueblue

    “Both coalition parties remained scarred by the political potency of Ed Millibands pledge to freeze energy prices” Says who????? The media think it is a good line, the rest of us know that we had this shower in power for 13yrs and during that time did our bills go down? Think on. The chattering media spin this for all it is worth and it won’t fly. Millipede and his merry band belonged to a government who delivered little of worth but were great at posturing and the media were, and still are, fantastic on the pick up of any utterance that they can create a ‘narrative’ with. The word is narrative, a story line, that is all it is. We were also promised a referendum by his party and over the 13yrs never got it. Promises, promises, promises, every tart does it.

    If you switch to some suppliers now you can fix your price for a long period now, without Millipede. Simpler and less sickening. Done it, did not need Millipedes help.

  • BarkingAtTreehuggers

    I don’t believe electricity prices are yet expensive enough… eh, value for money yet. Is the UK two tiny steps from Russian retaliation, i.e. a reduction/cut off of 40% of UK coal imports? If that’s not market exposure, what is?

  • an ex-tory voter

    I don’t want to switch energy supplier, I want to switch government!
    I want a government focused on providing the nation with the lowest possible energy prices (regardless of supposed environmental impact), providing energy security, and national energy self-sufficiency. Finally, I want a government which does not force me to line the pockets of the green scammers building useless wind farms, or selling ineffective solar arrays, or selling carbon credits.

    • 2trueblue

      Absolutely agree with you about green scammers. 11 of the 18 people supplying advice to the last government had direct interest in the wind turbine industry. Over 13yrs we did not move forward to securing any sort of energy security, that is a long period of inertia which is now crippling our country. Why we have to pay for wind turbines that do not supply the energy when we need it, and have to pay for them to be switched off at other times, as they are producing too much, and that we can’t store. The whole area need cleaning up and the public must have more say in it, rather than being taxed to support these scams.

    • First L

      Be careful what you wish for – on the face of it Ed Miliband will offer lower energy bills. For precisely two years – and then extra high energy bills caused by his spectacularly stupid policy for the next two decades afterwards – by which point we’ll be into oil shock anyway.

  • swatnan

    Why not switch everything off … and save Energy that way? Bills will go down for sure.
    We waste far too much already Energy as it is.

  • Dodgy Geezer

    Green politics is about saving things.

    Technically, we have the ability to produce practically unlimited power, water, you name it, and provide it for almost nothing. There really is no need to ‘save’ energy or water – we cannot run out of either resource.

    However, if things are cheap and abundant, it is impossible to get people to save them….

    Therefore Green politics is about making things scarce and expensive….

  • Rhoda Klapp8

    Oh, I see it is called the BIG DEAL. Funny, that’s what I said.

  • Ron Todd

    The obvious response would be ‘time to switch governments’ except the other lot will be at least as bad.

  • Rhoda Klapp8

    Switch, and keep switching til your bill is down to nothing, presumably. This is so offensively daft, so insulting, that no Spect journalist should be writing it up as if it were not. STOP slipping govt propaganda in here as if it was a valid subject of conversation. We deserve better.

  • AnotherDave

    The problem is that they’re not on the side of the consumer.

    It’s government policy to force consumers to overpay for electricity. It’s government policy to force electricity suppliers to buy expensive electricity, rather than cheap electricity.

    UKIP’s energy policy is to repeal the climate change act, and reduce the energy costs of british residents and businesses.

Can't find your Web ID? Click here