According to the Committee, chaired by MP Tim Yeo, the UK’s energy system needs to undergo significant changes in the next few years in order to deliver secure, clean and affordable energy in the future.

The Committee’s recent inquiry, Consumer Engagement with Energy Markets, found that public trust in energy companies was low and there was a clear sense of a lack of transparency around energy company prices and profits.

Backing up the Committee’s inquiry, a study by Consumer Focus found that consumers believe energy companies should invest their profits in renewable energy.

The study also found that security of supply was the greatest concern, particularly the high and growing dependence on imported gas.

Yeo also, this week, outlined the importance of investing in the low-carbon energy technologies of the future.

He called on the Government to show greater leadership in establishing a world beating low-carbon energy market in the UK.

The launch of the Commttiee’s inquiry comes as fuel poverty is projected to hit 3.9m households in 2012 as “rising energy prices put increasing pressure on low income consumers, often compounded by extra charges which penalise those who are struggling most”.

“This inquiry aims to investigate through an analysis of energy prices, energy company profits and fuel poverty what is being done to ensure consumer protection and fairness in the energy market,” the statement added.

Leigh Stringer

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