Energy Security and Net Zero – in the House of Commons on 28th February 2023.
What recent assessment he has made of the adequacy of energy bill support for heat network customers.
Heat network consumers have been supported throughout the winter through the energy bill relief scheme, with discounts on their heating and hot water bills, and the energy bills support scheme, paid primarily through domestic electricity bills.
The Minister will know that the energy bill relief scheme has not succeeded in limiting commercial gas prices to 7.5p per kilowatt-hour as intended, and that the energy bill support scheme alternative fund only went live last week. The result is that, faced with staggeringly high energy bills, most heat network customers are receiving woefully inadequate financial support, and some have yet to receive any support at all. Can I urge the Government in the strongest possible terms to look again at how we might properly protect the half a million customers served by communal and district heating systems?
From April, under the successor to the energy bill relief scheme, the Government are committed to providing support that is in line with support to other domestic consumers. The Government are working on the successor to that scheme, and if anybody has any issues, of course, they can contact the energy ombudsman if they are concerned.