SNP MSP James Dornan, Cathcart urged Energy companies to ‘make a difference’

SNP MSP James Dornan, Cathcart urged Energy companies to ‘make a difference’

An energy summit looking at ways to help low income households living in fuel poverty and facing a ‘poverty premium’ of paying more for their energy was hosted today with representatives from the ‘Big Six’ energy companies.

Energy companies were invited to the meeting - chaired by the Equalities Secretary Angela Constance with Energy Minister Paul Wheelhouse – to discuss and identify further actions they could take that will make a material and important difference to low income families in Scotland.

Ms Constance also used the opportunity to discuss two recently published independent reports looking at fuel poverty in Scotland. The reports made over 100 recommendations, including two key recommendations for energy companies on energy costs. The Government will formally respond to the reports next year.

Speaking about fuel poverty James Dornan said:

“I am pleased to see energy companies gathering together to discuss the best way to make energy costs fairer, particularly for low income families.

“Statistics from 2011-2013 have estimated that there are 19,900 ‘cold homes’ within Cathcart with an estimated 35% of households in Cathcart suffering from Fuel Poverty.

“For me tackling fuel poverty is a number one priority. As these statistics show that whilst some energy companies are supporting those struggling with fuel poverty, there clearly needs to be good practice shared across all energy companies so that these statistics can be a thing of the past.

“This is why I am urging energy companies to work together and make a difference in tackling energy poverty both in my constituency of Cathcart and across Scotland.”

Background

Recommendations from the report include -

Energy companies to launch a proactive engagement campaign to guide customers on restricted meters through an assessment of their heating needs and ensure they are transferred to the cheapest and most appropriate deal for their needs.

Identifying specific measures to support customers in rural and off-gas grid areas who suffer from higher energy prices than the rest of Scotland.

Strategic Working Group: http://www.gov.scot/Publications/2016/10/2273/downloads#res-1

Task Force: http://www.gov.scot/Publications/2016/10/2017

Cathcart Statistics from: http://existinghomesalliancescotland.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2016/04/Cold-Homes-in-Scotland-Factsheet.pdf

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