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Utilities Epidemic 1

Barry Loughran

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If you live in South Wales, you are likely to face a huge gas and electricity increase in your bill this winter. Two of the leading gas and electricity providers are set to dramatically increase their prices within hours of each other as they blame soaring wholesale energy prices which have risen over the past year.

The price of gas is set to rise the most with the companies charging an additional 29.2% and 26% respectively. The price for electricity is also set to rise by 19.2% and 16% respectively.

A source from one of the providers stated that “Energy suppliers have to take steps towards covering their costs" and apologised for being unable to delay these price rises any longer.

The move has angered Welsh customers with their utility bills rising dramatically.

If other competitors continue to follow suit customers could be facing a fuel epidemic with over 168,000 people facing fuel poverty. An expert stated that “Price hikes will plunge thousands more into the desperate situation of having to choose between eating and heating. There are already high levels of child and pensioner poverty in Wales, the reality is that these recent energy price hikes could, in extreme cases, lead to cold-related deaths this winter.

"It is about time the energy companies took a fairer and more responsible approach and ensured their poorest customers get the best possible value for money. "

An energy price comparison company released figures that an average household utilities bill in January 2008 was £875; since then, this has now increased to £1,259.

Cheap electricity will soon be a thing of the past; with gas and electricity prices rising we face a serious epidemic with other utilities such as water following suit.


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