DECC shrugs off calls for energy price rise inquiry

The Department of Energy and Climate Change has responded to a call by Which? for an independent review into the rising cost of domestic energy bills.

The consumer group had called on the government to admit that the energy market was ‘broken’ and investigate why four of the ‘big six’ energy suppliers have recently opted to hike electricity and gas prices this winter.

DECC has rebuffed the request adding that a lengthy inquiry would not ultimately assist households struggling to pay increased bills and that the forthcoming Energy Bill is aimed at increasing confidence in the market.

A DECC spokesman said: “Households facing rising energy bills this winter aren’t going to be helped by more inquiries or investigations that could take years to complete and implement. We know what the problems are, we want to get on with tackling them now. We’re focussing on action, not more words.

“The fact is reforms by government and Ofgem, including electricity market reform through the forthcoming Energy Bill and Ofgem’s ongoing Retail Market Review, offer the quickest way to boost consumer confidence in the energy market.

“We have the Energy Bill due this autumn, and Ofgem is due to move to the next stage of its review before winter. In the meantime we’re offering practical advice to households on how to get energy bills down and keep their homes warm.”