Socialist Worker

Gas price rise has human cost

Issue No. 1989

Around 200,000 more people face “fuel poverty” after British Gas announced price rises of 22 percent this week. On average, households will face an annual energy bill of over £1,000.

British Gas, Britain’s biggest energy supplier, has raised gas bills by an average of £249 over the past three years.

Alan Asher of Energywatch, which monitors fuel prices, has said that there will be “three million households languishing in fuel poverty by the end of the year. That means more people choosing whether to heat or eat.”

With the average weekly state pension at just £109.80, the price hikes will force thousands more pensioners into poverty.

Daphne Savage, chief executive of Age Concern Suffolk, said, “We have got the cutbacks in social care and the increases in council tax, and now this big British Gas price rise.

“It is all coming together when it has already been a difficult winter period for older people.”


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Sat 25 Feb 2006, 00:00 GMT
Issue No. 1989
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