Background

The cost of energy for consumers in the UK has been a source of continuing debate and discussion, both in energy policy circles and in the wider public discourse. Concerns have been expressed both over the size of bills and the contribution that policies to incentivise low-carbon generation and energy saving make to the total cost of energy to consumers.

There is also tension between some in the energy supply industry, who ascribe recent prices rises to government policies, and the UK government who argue that low-carbon generation and energy saving policy costs make up a relatively small component of total bills.

Aims

In order to contribute to this debate, the primary research question which this project addresses is:

  • How do the impacts of government policies, paid for through consumer bills, differ between countries?

The project examines the composition of electricity prices in the UK and selected case study countries (Germany, France, Sweden and Australia) to assess prices differences and understand the extent of those differences. The focus is on electricity prices faced by domestic consumers in the case study countries, and the calculated impact of actual policies.

Further details can be found in the project scoping note below:

Explaining the impact of policy on consumer energy bills: Scoping note and review protocol