Energy bills Q&A: How the Coalition can strike a deal
Andrew Grice has been Political Editor of The Independent since 1998. He was previously Political Editor of The Sunday Times, where he worked for 10 years, and he has been a Westminster-based journalist since 1982. His column, Inside Politics, appears in The Independent each Saturday.
Thursday 24 October 2013
Q. How will David Cameron fulfil his pledge to cut energy bills by the time George Osborne makes his Autumn Statement on 4 December?
A. He doesn’t know yet. He has promised to “roll back” green levies, which make up £112 (9 per cent) of the £1,267 average household bill. But he needs to that with the Liberal Democrats, who do not want to drop funding for renewable energy and home insulation or cut help for people in fuel poverty.
Q. How might the Coalition reach a compromise?
A. Nick Clegg argues that switching part of the cost on to general taxation would be fairer as the better-off would pay more. But Labour claims that would not touch the “Big Six” energy companies, which are accused of profiteering.
Q. How will Cameron make sure that his changes to green levies are passed on to energy customers in the form of lower bills?
A. That is a key question. He will be anxious to avoid any suggestion that energy firms will benefit financially from his proposals.
Q. What are the other options?
A. A shake-up of the Energy Companies Obligation, which funds energy-saving measures for people on benefits without cutting their cash support.
Ukip supporters are 55 or older, white and socially conservative, finds British Social Attitudes Report
Street preacher quoting from the Bible fined for calling homosexuality an 'abomination'
Jeremy Clarkson sacked live: Alan Yentob 'wouldn't rule out' ex Top Gear host's BBC return
Woman filmed launching racist tirade against men on the Tube for speaking in 'own lingo'
The West has it totally wrong on Lee Kuan Yew
David Cameron calls Labour 'hopeless, sneering socialists' while announcing 7-day NHS plans
- 1 Britain First 'acting like Ukip henchmen' by invading meeting of activists in revenge for pub protest against Nigel Farage
- 2 Katie Hopkins attacked me on Twitter — so I reported her to the police for inciting racial hatred
- 3 Tidal: Jay Z's Spotify rival streaming service criticised for making wealthy artists even richer
- 4 Brixton squat flats now costing up to £3k per month show how out of control rent is in London
- 5 A new (old) cure for MRSA? Revolting recipe from the Dark Ages may be key to defeat infection