Government invites views on extending fuel poverty programme to all energy suppliers

The department of energy and climate change is inviting views on whether it should remove the participation threshold for the warm homes discount, which would make all energy suppliers liable for the costs of the scheme to combat fuel poverty.

At present, only energy suppliers with 250,000 or more domestic consumers have to take part in the scheme, which costs £320 million per year. The proposal came in the government’s consultation on extending the Warm Home Discount Scheme at current spending levels until 2021. Other changes proposed include more data sharing putting a cap on the total proportion of its spending each supplier can use on debt assistance and to allow fuel poverty schemes to bid for funding from the suppliers, as a way for energy companies to meet their obligations.

These changes would reduce make the scheme cheaper and easier for suppliers to deliver, Decc argued. “In a scenario where all rebates are delivered through data matching, and where the industry initiative component of the scheme offers the option of a simple payment into a central pot, the composition of a supplier’s customer base no longer has a bearing on how difficult it is to meet the obligation,” it said.

The consultation closes on 6 May.

Read more: Warm Home Discount Scheme

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