Carmichael calls for ‘island tariff’ to cut energy costs

Shetland’s MP has called for an “island tariff” in recognition of the higher energy needs in his constituency.

Alistair Carmichael made the comments after Ofgem’s announcement to cut the energy price cap.

While the regulator’s reduction brings the average price down to £1,923 for a dual household – a saving of £151 – Mr Carmichael said customers in the isles will likely pay more. The new cap comes in from 1st October.

Mr Carmichael said: “While any drop in the energy price cap is welcome, the last year of rocketing prices makes calling it a “cap” a joke in poor taste.

“We all know that the energy market is not fit for purpose, either for families’ bills or for our wider need to improve energy efficiency and generate more renewables.

“Until we take a grip of that seriously then price cap changes are just tinkering at the edges.”

Mr Carmichael said price caps meant little to people in the isles where energy requirements were far higher.

“Whether it is differentiated tariffs for areas with higher fuel poverty or outright decentralisation of the system, Ofgem needs to recognise that one-size-fits-all does not fit the isles,” he added.

“Now is the time to bring back social tariffs for energy.

“More to the point, the acceptance of the need of a social tariff by Ofgem surely opens the door to a geographical tariff – like an islands tariff of the sort we have been calling for here, which would take into account not just income but the reality of our climate.”


Add Your Comment
  • Ali Inkster

    • August 26th, 2023 21:50

    There already is an island tariff, we pay 2p/unit more than the south

  • G Irvine

    • August 27th, 2023 12:50

    I have paid for electricity in various places in UK … I am paying the most for which I felt was due to the wonderfully diverse range of weather we get……. Consequently,I have been asking my family and friends for their daily standing charge rate from various locations in UK. The standing charge is fixed fee beyond our control, as we look for cheap usage , we still have this disparity on the fixed charge. Holy molly to discover that we in Shetland are paying the highest standing charge in UK, higher than even mainland Scotland. WHY????? Even the regulators are not able to enlighten me on the reason for this. First action should be ensuring that Shetlanders are paying the lowest daily standing charge as will our new turbines not be providing electricity for the South who already benefit from lower standing charge. This could be automatically adjusted with the Viking Benefit Fund now whilst the long long road to new legislation is fought and processed. Then we could pay the same fixed standing as those down South and be more inclusive rather than exclusive??

  • Bob Marsh

    • August 29th, 2023 16:20

    Perhaps in sanctioning the likes of Viking and those to follow the Scottish parliament and in turn SIC could have been more proactive in ensuring the likes of Shetland and other islands being bombarded with environmentally disastrous wind farms to provide power for others at least had an inexpensive power take off supply from same for local use legislated in as part of the agreed contract to accept these monstrosities. But no, power and huge profits mainly heads south while Shetland and others left with a pittance the detritus.


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