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Energy bill warning

Energy bill warning

Category: Gas and electricity

Updated: 09/10/2009
First Published: 09/10/2009

This article was correct at the time of publication. It is now over 6 months old so the content may be out of date.

Homeowners have been warned that household energy bills could rise by as much as 60% by 2016, by the regulator of the gas and electricity markets.

The startling prediction is made in Ofgem's latest review of Britain's energy supplies, but is said to be the worst case scenario.

More likely is an increase on current price levels of between 14% and 23% by 2020, though it will come as scant relief to those already struggling to pay their bills at present.

The lowest anticipated rise of 14% is based on the assumption of a slow recovery from the recession and global government support of green stimulus packages to reach environmental goals.

The review also revealed that investment of up to £200 billion was needed over the next ten years to ensure both energy supply and climate change targets are met.

"These are big challenges," said Ofgem chief executive Alistair Buchanan. "Consumers are already enduring high energy prices.

"This is why we are consulting with consumer and environmental groups, the academic community and industry to ensure any policy proposals we make are grounded on the best evidence available. Early action can avoid hasty and expensive measures later."

The report comes at a time when homeowners will increasingly be turning up their central heating to see them through the colder weather.

A recent survey revealed that people who have never before switched their gas & electricity supplier could save on average between £73 and £91 a year.

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