Responding to news from Ofgem today (Friday 14 October 2011) revealing that the profit margin for the ‘Big Six’ energy firms has risen to £125 per customer per year, Stan Blackley, chief executive of Friends of the Earth Scotland, said:

“While families across Scotland are struggling to pay their rocketing fuel bills, and shivering in cold homes, the Big Six energy companies are raking in ever increasing profits. We are being ripped off!

“We need urgent action to rein in the massive profits that these companies make, or at least to ensure that these profits are reinvested in measures to reduce fuel poverty or assist householders. We also need to reduce our reliance on expensive gas, which is the main cause of fuel price hikes.

“All of the ‘Big Six’ energy firms should be compelled to invest in clean renewable energy generation as well as demand reduction and energy efficiency measures, instead of just hitting hard pushed customers with ever bigger bills.”

Friends of the Earth Scotland backs Ofgem’s call for greater tariff simplicity and transparency, but is also calling on the Scottish Government to introduce a fully-funded, free and universal scheme to insulate every home in Scotland, which would reduce fuel bills, reduce levels of fuel poverty, improve public health, create jobs and boost the Scottish economy.

ENDS

For media enquiries, please contact: Per Fischer, Press Office, Friends of the Earth Scotland
 t: 0131 243 2719

Notes to Editors

1. The ‘Big Six’ energy firms are: Scottish Power, nPower, EDF Energy, Scottish and Southern Energy, E.ON UK and Centrica’s British Gas.

2. BBC – Energy firms’ profit margins soar, Ofgem says:
www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-15302723

3. Friends of the Earth Scotland is * Scotland’s leading environmental campaigning organisation * An independent Scottish charity with a network of thousands of supporters and active local groups across Scotland * Part of the largest grassroots environmental network in the world, uniting over 2 million supporters, 77 national member groups, and some 5,000 local activist groups – covering every continent.
www.foe-scotland.org.uk