As of this year, domestic energy bills in the UK have been steadily falling for a decade, with the average falling by a further £6 over the past 12 months.
However, a new report has suggested that only 1% of MPs are clued-up to this reality..
This news comes despite parliament approving a new price cap for energy bills in July, to take effect in December.
A new survey released by the Energy and Climate Intelligence Unit (ECIU) for YouGov showed that nearly two thirds of MPs believe that both energy bills and demand are rising. 100 MPs were surveyed for the data.
The fall is largely due to energy use becoming more efficient and less wasteful, with measures supported by levies on bills also having an effect.
As a result, ‘dual fuel’ bills have fallen in real terms by about £115 since the Climate Change Act was passed in 2008, according to the Committee on Climate Change (CCC).
The £6 fall over the last year is adjusted to reflect the comparative energy demand between each year. Without adjustment it stands at £36.
James Heappey, an MP for Wells and a member of the ECIU Advisory Board, said that the findings were a “good news story”, which show “once again that government energy policy is delivering ever-increasing value for money.
“It’s also really encouraging to find such high support across Parliament for stepping up measures to cut energy waste – something that is also hugely popular in the country.”
However, he added that the disappointing lack of awareness, as the polling indicated, is “something we have to change.”
Nearly three-quarters of MPs agree with a Government policy that would provide financial support for loft and other home insulation measures aimed at improving energy efficiency.
55% of MPs think that every new home should be built to zero-carbon standards – and just 18% opposed this directly. This suggests that support for the ‘zero carbon homes policy’, which was scrapped in 2015, is still strong.
The director of ECIU, Richard Black, commenting on the findings said “It’s not surprising that MPs are unaware of the long-term trend of falling energy bills given the continuing furore over price rises.”
He emphasised that policymakers should focus on energy efficiency measures, which have proved essential for balancing out the impact of price hikes.
“Even though the Big Six’s tariff hikes are real and do create problems for vulnerable customers, this shouldn’t hide the wider reality that measures to cut energy waste work – reducing energy demand, cutting carbon emissions and driving energy bills downwards,” he added.
Highlighting the need for transparent and accessible evidence to help inform policymakers and other stakeholders, he noted that, although the popularity of energy efficiency policy is huge across the country, there is a “big hole in policymaking.”
Looking forwards, he concluded that “it’s noteworthy that such measures also command widespread support across the House of Commons.”
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