Angus MP Mike Weir, SNP Spokesperson on Energy, has supported calls for a reduction in energy bills to reflect the reduced cost of wholesale energy and the fall in oil prices.
Speaking in a debate in the House of Commons Mr Weir said it was an absolute scandal that in an energy rich nation such as Scotland people were suffering fuel poverty and that energy companies should be compelled to pass on falls in wholesale prices to their customers.
Commenting on the matter Mr Weir said
“It is utterly unacceptable that there should be fuel poverty in an energy rich nation like Scotland, but not only is it present but is increasing, despite the fact that the Scottish Government has put in place many schemes to address it”
“The 2013 Scottish House Conditions Survey shows that 39.1% of Scottish households were in fuel poverty. That is a horrendous figure, yet it would have been 11% if fuel prices had risen in line with inflation between 2002 and 2013, which demonstrates a fundamental failure of the UK regulated energy market.”
Mr Weir has also revealed householders are unfairly suffering from high energy bills as it is revealed small consumers in the UK have seen the highest increase in energy prices out of any EU country, and has seen the highest increase in both domestic electricity and gas prices both excluding and including taxes, between 2011 and 2014.
“As the country is gripped by wintry weather, many will be struggling to heat their homes.
“The Scottish Government has called on ScottishPower, SSE, E-on, EDF, RWE/Npower, Centrica and Energy UK to ensure households and businesses benefit from the drop in wholesale prices.
“At a time when we are seeing the Oil and Gas industry shedding jobs as prices fall it appears that the energy companies who are major beneficiaries of these falls are not passing them on to consumers, so people in Scotland and Angus are suffering a double whammy. This is completely unacceptable.”
“The recent falls in wholesale energy costs and oil prices have not been reflected in our energy bills and if the companies are not prepared to positively react to these changes and pass them on to consumers then they must be compelled to do so.”