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Government launches review into renewable energy tariffs

Government launches review into renewable energy tariffs

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A government consultation announced today will review the transparency with which energy companies advertise their renewable energy tariffs in response to concerns about “greenwashing” causing confusion to customers.

“Greenwashing” refers to the use of marketing spin to make fossil fuel energy seem clean. Currently, suppliers can match the amount of energy their customers use with REGO certificates that represent the same amount of renewable energy. This means that they can make electricity from the wholesale market, which includes fossil fuels, look entirely green when it actually isn’t. Revamping or scrapping the REGO system is just one option under consideration.

Additionally, suppliers may need to provide clearer information to households about their green tariffs, including the type of renewable energy used and where the energy was generated.

The Government is also seeking evidence with regard to whether third-party intermediaries in the energy market, such as price comparison sites and auto-switching services, should be regulated.

Richard Neudegg, Head of Regulation at Uswitch.com, said:

“Transparency is key to bring consumers on the journey to net zero. Households want to do their bit to help the environment, so it's vital to make it as simple as possible for them to confidently pick the tariffs that actually help to support renewable energy.“

More and more people are purchasing green tariffs but it’s been difficult for bill-payers to know exactly what’s under the hood of these deals. We support any measures that aim to demystify green tariffs for households.”

How green is your tariff?

Uswitch’s Green Accreditation scheme was set up for this precise reason: to bring clarity to customers looking to switch to a green tariff. Each green tariff is assessed by a panel of experts and given a rating of Bronze, Silver or Gold. You can then clearly see each tariff’s rating on the results table when you compare energy deals.

Compare energy prices here

It's a good idea to compare energy regularly to see what the latest prices mean for you, even though there are fewer deals available. Enter your postcode to get started.

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