Energy bills: “much more cost to come”

“More than half of Brits say they cannot afford heat pumps which are likely to replace gas boilers.”

The government’s long-expected Heat and Buildings Strategy still hasn’t been published

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We’re paying more and will have to pay yet more for our energy:

Ofgem warns soaring gas prices will feed into customer bills – BBC News

Old Sparky provided a very appropriate comment in Private Eye:

“As we accelerate towards net-zero carbon, regulator Ofgem’s increasing of the energy price cap might feel like the final straw. But there’s much more cost to come. Can residential energy bills continue to do all the heavy lifting? The higher cap, if suppliers exploit it fully, represents £2bn added to bills.

Ofgem’s reason? Ballooning worldwide commodity prices: Covid-induced low prices and low emissions were short-lived as governments everywhere launched large-scale infrastructure projects, as predicted here (Eye 1519). Even notionally ‘green’ recovery schemes involve much steel, concrete, copper and energy during construction; so prices (and emissions) are rising steeply. Even with the higher cap, another rash of bankruptcies among small energy suppliers is imminent: under-capitalised, they can’t hedge against these rising prices…”

Private Eye Columnists

Which is indeed the case pretty much everywhere:

Europe’s ambitious net-zero pledges hit home—with eye-watering energy bills | Fortune

However, what Old Sparky says further on into his piece is significant. The next stages after switching from coal to gas and building offshore windfarms will be the trickiest – which will be about lifestyle changes as well as decarbonising home heating and essential transport. All of which will mean even higher electricity bills for every household.

Chris Stark, the chief executive of the Climate Change Committee, says heat pumps are still far too expensive, according to the Telegraph:

Heat pumps not yet ready for the mass market, admits Government’s climate tsar | telegraph.co.uk

And the Sun has made it very clear that it’s going to cost individuals huge amounts:

HOUSEHOLDS with gas boilers could pay more for their bills and face higher charges in a bid to get Brits to switch to greener alternatives.

It comes as the government considers banning gas boilers from 2035 to help make homes more eco-friendly and tackle the climate crisis. The government could look at slapping Brits who have dirty boilers with higher bills and charges from the mid-2020s, according to The Times, so that Brits who switch aren’t penalised by higher costs.

The plans are expected to be outlined next month in the upcoming Heat and Building Strategy paper, and households could be paying up to £100 more a year, according to the reports.

Plans to slap households who still have gas boilers with “financial penalties” has previously been considered by the government. While gas boilers are set to be banned in all new-build homes from 2023 – which is two years earlier than planned.

However, concerns have been raised that low income families will not be able to afford the changes. More than half of Brits say they cannot afford heat pumps which are likely to replace gas boilers.

Households with gas boilers face higher bills and extra charges | thesun.co.uk

Looking at the bigger picture, the government’s long-expected Heat and Buildings Strategy still hasn’t been published:

The government is meeting just six per cent of its green homes targets – but bold action has public support

Heat and Buildings Strategy – What do we know so far? | GreenMatch

We do need to be doing something:

Industry leaders call for ‘retrofit revolution’ to hit crucial 2050 net-zero targets – Property Industry Eye

   
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