Taxpayers’ Alliance ‘made dodgy claims on energy bills’

 

The Energy Secretary Ed Davey has attacked the Taxpayers’ Alliance – accusing the campaign group of making “dodgy, back-of-fag-packet claims” about energy bills.

The Liberal Democrat minister hit out after the low-tax pressure group published figures claiming that household energy bills could reach £2,000 per household by the end of the decade – with green charges and subsequent VAT increasing prices by 29 per cent.

Its analysis was based on calculations from the investment bank Liberum Capital which predicted the rise in green energy taxes will mean average electricity bills reach £812 by 2020. The TaxPayers’ Alliance estimated gas bills could also rise by 29 per cent, using the forecasts to launch a campaign calling for an end to wind turbine subsidies.

But the figures have been disputed by Mr Davey, who has written to the Taxpayers’ Alliance to express his anger. The letter, seen by The Independent, says: “Your calculations are wrong and there is no good foundation to your claim that by 2020 green charges and tax will account for £620 of average energy bills. It is disingenuous to seek to pin the blame on government policies using inflated assessments of their impacts while ignoring the main driver for price increases – rising global fossil fuel prices.”

Mr Davey goes on to claim that Liberium “does not appear to have undertaken the detailed modelling of the electricity market required accurately to estimate the impact on prices and bills.” In addition, the ministers says there is no justification for assuming the 29 per cent increase in electricity prices would also apply to gas.

Mr Davey told The Independent: “Energy bills are too serious an issue for consumers to be misled with dodgy, back-of-fag-packet claims.”

The Department of Energy and Climate Change insists that spending on green energy will be offset by savings for customers, making bills around £166 cheaper in the long run.

Last night The Taxpayers’ Alliance’s chief executive Matthew Sinclair said: “The Liberum estimate of the investment needed seems very reasonable, particularly given the problems facing the nuclear programme and the Government missing their target to reduce the cost of offshore wind. It is very worrying that the Government is premising its policies on rising gas prices.”

Taxing questions: What they said

Taxpayers Alliance, led by Matthew Sinclair, says….

Electricity bills will rise by 29 per cent between now and 2020

Ed Davey says…

The new energy policy will account for 17 per cent of the increase in electricity unit prices, which will not affect household bills.

Taxpayers Alliance says…

A similar 29 per cent increase on gas bills, which it claims will rise to £1,070, making a total average energy bill almost £1,900.

Ed Davey says…

The policy impact on gas prices is currently much lower than electricity. It accounts for just 5 per cent of the gas retail price, and this is not currently expected to rise through to 2020.

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
ebooks
ebooksA special investigation by Andy McSmith
Life and Style
Google celebrates the 126th anniversary of the Eiffel Tower opening its doors to the public for the first time
techGoogle celebrates Paris's iconic landmark, which opened to the public 126 years ago today
News
Cleopatra the tortoise suffers from a painful disease that causes her shell to disintegrate; her new prosthetic one has been custom-made for her using 3D printing technology
newsCleopatra had been suffering from 'pyramiding'
News
people
Arts and Entertainment
Coachella and Lollapalooza festivals have both listed the selfie stick devices as “prohibited items”
music
Sport
Nigel Owens was targeted on Twitter because of his sexuality during the Six Nations finale between England and France earlier this month
rugbyReferee Nigel Owens on coming out, and homophobic Twitter abuse
Arts and Entertainment
Tracey Emin visits her 1990s work ‘My Bed’ at Tate Britain in London, where it is back on display from today
artsBut how does the iconic work stand up, 16 years on?
Life and Style
life + style
  • Get to the point
2015 General Election
May2015

Poll of Polls

Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Senior Web Designer / Front End Developer

£28000 - £32000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This fast expanding web managem...

Ashdown Group: Trainee Consultant - Surrey / South West London

£22000 per annum + pension,bonus,career progression: Ashdown Group: An establi...

Ashdown Group: Trainee Consultant - Surrey/ South West London

£22000 per annum + pension,bonus,career progression: Ashdown Group: An establi...

Ashdown Group: Recruitment Consultant / Account Manager - Surrey / SW London

£40000 per annum + realistic targets: Ashdown Group: A thriving recruitment co...

Day In a Page

No postcode? No vote

Floating voters

How living on a houseboat meant I didn't officially 'exist'
Louis Theroux's affable Englishman routine begins to wear thin

By Reason of Insanity

Louis Theroux's affable Englishman routine begins to wear thin
Power dressing is back – but no shoulderpads!

Power dressing is back

But banish all thoughts of Eighties shoulderpads
Spanish stone-age cave paintings 'under threat' after being re-opened to the public

Spanish stone-age cave paintings in Altamira 'under threat'

Caves were re-opened to the public
'I was the bookies’ favourite to be first to leave the Cabinet'

Vince Cable interview

'I was the bookies’ favourite to be first to leave the Cabinet'
Election 2015: How many of the Government's coalition agreement promises have been kept?

Promises, promises

But how many coalition agreement pledges have been kept?
The Gaza fisherman who built his own reef - and was shot dead there by an Israeli gunboat

The death of a Gaza fisherman

He built his own reef, and was fatally shot there by an Israeli gunboat
Saudi Arabia's airstrikes in Yemen are fuelling the Gulf's fire

Saudi airstrikes are fuelling the Gulf's fire

Arab intervention in Yemen risks entrenching Sunni-Shia divide and handing a victory to Isis, says Patrick Cockburn
Zayn Malik's departure from One Direction shows the perils of fame in the age of social media

The only direction Zayn could go

We wince at the anguish of One Direction's fans, but Malik's departure shows the perils of fame in the age of social media
Young Magician of the Year 2015: Meet the schoolgirl from Newcastle who has her heart set on being the competition's first female winner

Spells like teen spirit

A 16-year-old from Newcastle has set her heart on being the first female to win Young Magician of the Year. Jonathan Owen meets her
Jonathan Anderson: If fashion is a cycle, this young man knows just how to ride it

If fashion is a cycle, this young man knows just how to ride it

British designer Jonathan Anderson is putting his stamp on venerable house Loewe
Number plates scheme could provide a licence to offend in the land of the free

Licence to offend in the land of the free

Cash-strapped states have hit on a way of making money out of drivers that may be in collision with the First Amendment, says Rupert Cornwell
From farm to fork: Meet the Cornish fishermen, vegetable-growers and butchers causing a stir in London's top restaurants

From farm to fork in Cornwall

One man is bringing together Cornwall's most accomplished growers, fishermen and butchers with London's best chefs to put the finest, freshest produce on the plates of some of the country’s best restaurants
Robert Parker interview: The world's top wine critic on tasting 10,000 bottles a year, absurd drinking notes and New World wannabes

Robert Parker interview

The world's top wine critic on tasting 10,000 bottles a year, absurd drinking notes and New World wannabes
Don't believe the stereotype - or should you?

Don't believe the stereotype - or should you?

We exaggerate regional traits and turn them into jokes - and those on the receiving end are in on it too, says DJ Taylor