Energy price cap latest news: Fuel poverty fears mount as pensioners look for help with bills

Education minister says schools must stay open five days a week despite energy bills rising

Millions of households are set to struggle to pay their bills after Ofgem increased the energy price cap on Friday.

The UK’s energy regulator set the new price cap at £3,549 from October 1, marking a sharp 80 per cent rise in the cost of energy.

Families could face destitution over the winter if they have to pay 24.37p per kilowatt hour for the gas they burn to keep their homes at a liveable temperature. The price is currently 7.37p, already higher than ever before.

For the average household that means a bill of £5,632 per year from January, up 59% compared to the newly set next cap which is coming in on October 1.

And in the worst warning yet, energy consultancy Auxilione forecast a £7,700 bill from April 2023 – with gas costing consumers 34.22p per kWh.

As a result, the chairman of the Commons Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy Committee said the “vast majority of people” may now be in fuel poverty,

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Price cap experts forecasts £7,700 average bills next year

Forecasts of what the next capped energy price for 24 million households could be have continued to rise as international gas prices show no sign of cooling down, a team of experts has warned.

The energy price cap, which is set to nearly double from already record highs at the start of October, could reach more than £5,600 by the start of next year, and then rise even further, under the latest estimates.

Families could face destitution over the winter if they have to pay 24.37p per kilowatt hour for the gas they burn to keep their homes at a liveable temperature. The price is currently 7.37p, already higher than ever before.

For the average household that means a bill of £5,632 per year from January, up 59% compared to the newly set next cap which is coming in on October 1.

And in the worst warning yet, energy consultancy Auxilione forecast a £7,700 bill from April 2023 – with gas costing consumers 34.22p per kWh.

The forecast is an increase of £438 since Auxilione’s prediction on Friday morning, and up nearly £900 in just two days.

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‘Vast majority of people’ now in fuel poverty, Labour MP says

The “vast majority of people” may now be in fuel poverty, the chairman of the Commons Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy Committee has said.

Darren Jones said a possible definition of what fuel poverty means is if after having paid your housing costs and based on your disposable income, you are spending more than 10 per cent of that on energy bills.

The Labour MP for Bristol North West told BBC Breakfast: “The vast majority of people are now in that territory across the country and that is why Keir Starmer and Rachel Reeves put forward a very significant and bold suggestion about helping pretty much everybody by keeping the price capped to where it is now and stopping the increase in October because they, I think, rightly concluded that actually the vast majority of people now are being affected by this.”

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ICYMI- Ofgem boss says government must act now to stop price cap increasing more

Ofgem boss says government must act now to stop price cap increasing more

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‘You don’t have long to wait,’ George Eustice says on new PM’s plan to tackle energy crisis

The environment secretary has said people “don’t have long to wait” for news on how the next prime minister will tackle the cost-of-living crisis.

George Eustice said both Tory leadership candidates have already set out “some specific things” they would do to ease the burden, but it is right that whoever secures the top job will “want to look at all of the options properly costed” when they take office.

He told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme: “We announced a package of measures in June which was a £400 rebate for everyone, and then additional support for the most vulnerable.

“Both candidates have said they will do more. You don’t have long to wait, there will be a new prime minister in place in 10 days or so.

“And that is the point at which that new prime minister should look at the options and make decisions. and they’ve both made clear that this will be absolutely at the top of their in-tray.”

He added: “I think it’s right that when they become prime minister, whoever it is, they will want to look at all of the options properly costed and to understand the impact of each of those options.”

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ICYMI: Schools must stay open five days a week despite energy bill struggles, says minister

Schools in England must stay open five days a week this winter despite struggles with soaring energy costs, an education minister has said.

Some school leaders are reportedly considering three-day weeks to manage the sharp rise in gas and electricity bills.

Read the full story by Adam Forrest here:

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Cost of living crisis: The upcoming dates you need to know about

Autumn of bleak economic forecasts lies ahead as new PM enters Downing Street with plenty to do, Joe Sommerlad writes.

Read the full piece here:

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ICYMI: ‘Solidarity tax’ of 1% for all earners needed to raise more energy bill support, says think tank

Tory leadership hopefuls have been urged to reconsider their plans and bring in a “solidarity tax” of 1 per cent on all earners to help pay for extra support with soaring energy bills.

The Resolution Foundation said it was time for Liz Truss and Rishi Sunak – who have promised tax cuts – to “think the unthinkable” and raise tax during the worsening cost of living crisis.

The think tank said a 1 per cent hike in income tax on all rates – with 60 per cent paid by the wealthiest fifth of UK households – would raise £9.5bn a year for more support with gas and electricity bills.

Read the full story by Adam Forrest here:

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Government confirms £400 energy discount will be delivered in Northern Ireland

The government has committed to delivering a £400 energy bill discount to people in Northern Ireland.

Chancellor Nadhim Zahawi said the support would be delivered “as soon as possible” but did not set out a firm timeframe.

Read the full story here:

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Chancellor urges public to cut back on energy use as bills crisis mounts

The chancellor has urged the public to cut back on their energy use as the crisis over household bills mounts, with analysts predicting they could surge to £10,000 a year and campaigners warning lives will be lost.

Nadhim Zahawi said he was working “flat out” to ensure the next prime minister would be able to offer help to those who need it most as soon as possible.

Read the full story by Kate Devlin and Adam Forrest here:

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Boris Johnson says next PM will ‘plainly’ have to provide more cash for energy bills

Boris Johnson has said his successor will “plainly” have to provide further direct cash payments to help Britons cope with soaring energy bills in an apparent message to Tory leadership favourite Liz Truss.

Read the full story by Adam Forrest here:

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