Speaking at Holyrood, Scottish Energy Minister Fergus Ewing told MPs Labour’s plan to block price rises could lead to black outs.
He drew a parallel between the proposals and what happened in California in 2000, when prices were frozen and blackouts occurred.
To counter rising prices, Ewing suggested the creation of a new regulator for an independent Scotland, which would supervise the water, energy, rail and telecoms industries.
Ed Miliband’s proposal would see energy prices rises blocked for 20 months, should Labour be elected in 2015.
‘Companies will whack the prices sky-high’
Ewing said: “Consumer experts have said that before this freeze comes in the companies will whack the prices sky-high and companies may put off decisions by energy companies to invest in new cleaner generation capacity.
“An arbitrary price freeze has been tried before in California in 2000, which led to blackouts and an increase in the wholesale price of 800%.
“Never can I recall a measure introduced by a leader of a major political party in the UK which has received such widespread, utter and total condemnation as being completely unworkable.
“And worst of all for Scotland, such an arbitrary measure threatens to impair the essential investment in renewable energy schemes which are so important for this country.”
‘Ewing spoke today for the energy companies’
Ewing had been responding to Labour’s former Scottish leader Iain Gray, who had challenged the Scottish National Party to match Labour’s price freeze promise.
Following the discussion at Holyrood, Gray said: “Sadly, the SNP has chosen the side of the big energy firms over hard-pressed families being hit with growing energy bills.
“Ed Miliband’s plan to freeze energy bills and reform the energy market was welcomed by families who will be dismayed that the SNP government has failed to match this pledge.
“Not only are the SNP refusing to support a price freeze, they have set their face against a regulator with the power to control prices in the long run. Fergus Ewing spoke today for the energy companies and against the Scottish consumer.”