By Gemma Childe on 17th May 2012
Household energy bills will be nearly £100 lower with renewable energy policies than without them, according to government analysis.
The Department for Energy and Climate Change estimated that the average annual bill will be £1,285 by 2020 with low-carbon measures in place, whereas a business-as-usual approach would result in an average bill of £1,379.
The figures come after Centrica, the owner of British Gas, warned that energy prices are likely to rise by as much as £50 per household in the near future. There have been claims that removing renewable energy incentives would help to lessen the impact of rises in wholesale gas prices.
But the DECC analysis shows that investing in low-carbon energy will pay off in the long-term, according to the Scottish Energy Minster, Fergus Ewing.
“Renewable energy is vital to Scotland and to the rest of the UK," he said. "It is essential if we are to keep bills down for ordinary families, boost the economy and meet our climate change targets."
Mr Ewing pointed to separate research by the energy watchdog Ofgem which backed the DECC in finding that renewable energy would help to reduce consumer bills.
He claimed that green energy incentives represented good value for money.
“Renewable incentives add only £15-20 to annual household utility bills in Scotland – a valuable investment in keeping future bills down," said Mr Ewing.
“Industry figures show there are already 11,000 renewable energy jobs in Scotland and £750 million was invested in renewable energy over the last year – and this figure is set to rise."