Thursday, 25 July 2013


If you give someone enough rope then they will probably hang themselves, that old saying could well be applied to the latest escapade of one of the big six energy cartel members. They collectively continue to fleece their customers and to maximize their profits at every opportunity.  The latest scam, involves the energy firm E.On who have been has been hit with a £3 million pound penalty for failing to prove that it distributed free energy-saving light bulbs to its consumers. It gets better, it turns out that some of the free energy saving light bulbs were sold in the Irish Republic, while E.On was unable to prove that others were handed out to its customers.  

Now the free low energy saving light bulbs were supposed to be part of an energy efficiency scheme that had been ordered by regulator Ofgem back in 2010 as part of a carbon reduction programme. Some £2.5 million of E.On's penalty will end up being used to reduce the bills of vulnerable households next winter, as it will go into the pot of money that’s is regularly put aside for those of us who face fuel poverty and receive support from the Warm Home Discount. The remaining £500,000 will go to the Treasury as a fine.

The good news is that E.On has apologized and has claimed that it had distributed almost 25 million free energy saving light bulbs to customers back in 2010 to comply with a government programme to save energy, known as CERT. Sounds plausible, save for the fact that it was only able to account for around 21 million of the bulbs. Three thoughts cross my mind, one is why should any of the customers of the big six energy cartel members be remotely surprised that this happened, secondly a fine of £ 3 million pounds if nothing else shows how toothless the energy regulator actually is and thirdly, accepting that this is a relatively minor misdemeanor on the part of a cartel member, so what exactly do they have to do before the farce that passes itself of as the free market for energy is finally sorted out? 

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