Publications - Affordability, Vulnerability & Fairness

In response to Ofgem's call for input on affordability and debt in the domestic retail market, we highlight that debt is increasing not diminishing. We propose solutions, but stress that we face an enduring problem of energy poverty and debt that existed long before the energy and cost of living crises. A whole-system joined up approach is needed to deliver affordable energy for all.

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We held a rountable on the roughly 3 million energy customers who are being unfairly and inconsistently treated, following a report by Maxine Frerk called 'It's a Lottery', which revealed that these 'Economy 7 customers are not being adequately protected. This document is an unattributed note that captures the findings and recommendations expressed at the rountable

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As customers face an ongoing energy crisis there is an urgent need for targeted financial support. But the crisis has also underlined the need for wider energy savings and efficiency including a push for home insulation. This would not only help households struggling this winter but is essential in tackling the pressing challenge of climate change and the net zero transition.

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This technical paper is a welcome expert contribution and 'explainer' from Dr Chris Harris. It sets out basic economic considerations in energy supplier hedging and discusses how these may interact with energy volumes, wholesale prices and the price-cap in a period of major uncertainty. He raises important questions about our near-term readiness and resilience for a cold winter and he stresses the short and longer-term imperative for energy saving.

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This discussion paper begins by exploring the importance of engagement in terms of delivering public value. It considers the reasons why engagement is important, different types of engagement and the concept of engagement maturity.

It then puts forward Sustainability First’s ‘Essential Services Utopia’ proffering some key outcomes we should aspire to achieve in the water and energy sectors, and which engagement can play a key role in delivering. The paper then highlights 26 recommendations to maximise public value. There is much good work going on in this area but to really seize the ‘engagement opportunities’ available, we consider that decision makers should stand back and ask some fundamental questions about their approach.

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