MPs' fury over energy prices

SUFFOLK MPs are today demanding answers after it emerged that energy prices in the region will be going up by far more than the national average.As revealed in yesterday's Evening Star, households in Suffolk are facing average bill increases of more than £200 for combined gas and electricity bills.

SUFFOLK MPs are today demanding answers after it emerged that energy prices in the region will be going up by far more than the national average.

As revealed in yesterday's Evening Star, households in Suffolk are facing average bill increases of more than £200 for combined gas and electricity bills.

Energy supplier npower revealed they will be increasing their charges for gas by 23 per cent and electricity by 17pc, around five pc more than other parts of the country.

They say the above average increases are a result of greater regional costs for distribution and infrastructure.


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Other gas and electricity suppliers are yet to announce their price increases although it is believed they will be broadly in line with those of npower, meaning every household in Ipswich is likely to be affected.

Ipswich's Labour MP Chris Mole is to refer npower's steep price rises for East Anglia to the official regulator for energy Ofgem.

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He said: “It is totally illogical to put up prices in this part of the world because much of the energy this country uses comes from here - so it should have to go a lesser distance.

“Not only does all the gas come in through Bacton but we have Sizewell B and this is also becoming a key area for generating renewable power with wind farms and similar projects.

“It doesn't really make sense to make it more expensive in London either because you don't have to take the energy over large rural distances. I cannot understand this at all. It is something that should be investigated.”

Conservative MP for Suffolk Coastal, John Gummer, said people have to accept that energy costs will increase in coming years but added that he doesn't think people in Suffolk should pay more than others.

He said: “There is no point in arguing that energy bills should not go up. They will go up because we are short of energy and are going to find ourselves increasingly short.

“This is part of the story of climate change and we have got to do a great deal more about energy efficiency. The issue is that no more in terms of price increases is passed on to the consumer than necessary.

“I don't think they have proved their case and I will be demanding a much more effective answer from the company to see how they make their figures work.”

A spokeswoman for npower said the firm is charged different amounts by energy distributors across the country and they are passing on those costs in a “fair” manner.

She said: “It is fair that what it costs us is what we charge our customers. It is about balancing up the mechanism and making it a fairer way of charging people.”

What do you make of the price rises? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN or e-mail eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk

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