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Claire Perry Blames British Gas For Her Own Climate Policies

April 11, 2018

By Paul Homewood




A 5.5%, or £60 a year, rise in energy prices for British Gas customers on default deals has been branded as “unjustified” by the government.


The company, the UK’s largest energy supplier, said that 4.1 million of its customers would be affected.

The increase will take effect from 29 May and follows its 12.5% rise in electricity prices last September.

British Gas argued that it was raising prices owing to factors beyond its control, such as wholesale costs.

The 5.5% increase, which applies to both gas and electricity, will see the average annual standard variable dual-fuel bill for British Gas customers go up to £1,161.

Energy minister Claire Perry said: “We are disappointed by British Gas’s announcement of an unjustified price rise in its default tariff when customers are already paying more than they need to.”

Energy regulator Ofgem described the increase as “unwelcome” and encouraged householders to shop around.

British Gas said it had to lift prices following a rise in the cost of producing energy – including wholesale costs.

The company pointed to a similar decision by energy regulator Ofgem, which recently blamed wholesale costs for the rise in the default tariff for those with prepayment meters.

Mark Hodges, chief executive of Centrica Consumer, of which British Gas is a part, said: “We fully understand that any price increase adds extra pressure on customers’ household bills. This increase we are announcing today is reflective of the costs we are seeing which are beyond our control.”

He also blamed the extra charges it faced as part of government policy, such as the introduction of smart meters and emissions targets.

“Government policies, intended to transform the energy system, are important but they are putting pressure on customers’ bills. We believe government should level the playing field so the customers of all suppliers pay a fair share of energy policy costs,” Mr Hodges said.

“We continue to encourage government to consider moving these costs out of energy bills altogether and into general taxation.”



Another day, another lie from Claire Perry!

I have argued for a long time that there is a conspiracy to hide the true cost of govt climate policies, led by politicians on both sides and the Committee on Climate Change, and ably abetted by the agenda driven BBC and useful idiots in the media.

So are British Gas’ increases justified or not?

First of all, let’s look at gas, which is pretty straightforward.

According to Catalyst Energy Solutions, wholesale prices for natural gas have increased by 19% in the last year.



Wholesale costs only account for part of the total supply cost, but clearly a price rise of 5.5% is not unreasonable.



But what about electricity?


Again, we see that wholesale prices have increased sharply.

But more significantly, so too have green subsidies, imposed to meet govt climate targets:



This year, the cost has risen from £8.6bn to £10.4bn, an increase of £1.8bn, which equates to roughly 5% on retail electricity prices.

Is Claire Perry not aware of these official figures, which come from the OBR? If not she is incompetent and should not be in the job.

If she is aware, then she is lying through her teeth.


But what about the longer term? Energy companies are often accused of putting up prices when costs rise, but failing to reduce them when they fall.

Fortunately the comparison site, uSwitch, has this potted history:


Recent price changes from British Gas

In August 2017, after freezing prices for six months, British Gas announced it would raise electricity prices by 12.5% on its standard plan customers. This price rise would take effect 15 September.

Claire Osborne, energy expert at uswitch says:

“It’s time to switch supplier and send a message that price rises like these just aren’t acceptable.

“Seven in 10 households are overpaying for their energy on expensive standard tariffs, yet within ten minutes they could switch and save hundreds of pounds – as well as protect themselves against further hikes by fixing their tariff.”

Previously, in February 2017, British Gas had announced it would extend its price freeze until August 2017. This news came after three other big six suppliers — EDF Energy, ScottishPower and npower — had announced price rises of 1.8%, 7.8% and 9.8%, respectively.

See the most recent price changes from British Gas and other suppliers below:


*Based on a medium energy user on a standard dual fuel tariff, paying on receipt of bill, with bill sizes averaged across all regions.
British Gas price rises and price announcments

In November 2016, British Gas announced that it would freeze prices for standard rate customers for the winter season. The supplier promised to keep rates where they are until at least March 2017 (in early 2017 the supplier stated it would extend its price freeze until August 2017).

British Gas last announced a price rise in October 2013, when the company said it would raise prices by 9.2% on average, or about £123 more per year for the average customer. This would go into effect on 23 November 2013. (In 2014 and in 2015, the supplier announced three price cuts to its gas customers.)


We can ignore the self serving comment about how it’s time to switch supplier. This is how uSwitch make their money.

The salient point is that, prior to this new rise, British Gas have only increased electricity prices since Oct 2013 – an average on electricity and gas of 9.2%, and 12.5% last year. (Note they also cut gas prices three times in 2014 and 2015).

If we look again at those Environmental Levies, this year they are projected to add £10.4bn to energy bills (nearly all on electricity). Back in 2014/15, the cost was £3.6bn.



So since 2014, electricity consumers have been forced to pay an additional £6.8bn, which equates to about 20% on their bills.

This pretty much covers British Gas’ price increases during that time.

To these costs, of course, we must add the cost of the smart meter rollout demanded by government, but paid for by the major energy suppliers. At an estimated £11bn up to 2020, this amounts to about £2bn a year, or 5%.


Whichever way you dice it, climate policies, enacted and agreed to with scarcely a murmur by all three major parties, are adding huge amounts to electricity bills, and have been the major cause of price rises in the last four years.

As the Helm Report recommended, these costs should be taken back from energy bills, and accounted for in government expenditure, where they belong.

But the chances of these are even less than Southend United winning the Treble next season. It’s much easier to put the blame on those greedy, rip-off energy companies.

  1. Chris Pickup permalink
    April 11, 2018 6:53 pm

    Far too complicated! Just point out that “Green” subsidies are costing consumers a lot of money ( maybe 25 % of their electricity bill) as is the discredited move to smart meters.

    You have to mobilise consumers to demand a repeal of the Climate Change Act and a sensible mix of energy resources going forward.

  2. April 11, 2018 7:25 pm

    When was the last time Britain had an energy minister who wasn’t in denial and/or ignorance of the basic facts – can anyone remember? Must pre-date the limate Change Act 2008 at least.

    • April 11, 2018 7:26 pm

      Climate, even.

      • Joe Public permalink
        April 12, 2018 6:08 pm

        Nah, the phonetic was correct.

    • Bloke down the pub permalink
      April 11, 2018 7:46 pm

      Should be remembered that Claire Perry is the Minister of State for Energy and Clean Growth working under the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, Greg Clark. At least energy is no longer a separate ministry.

  3. Bloke down the pub permalink
    April 11, 2018 7:37 pm

    The energy companies have made a rod for their own backs by paying lip service to the environmentalists. I’d like to say it serves them right but of course it’s us that’ll have to pay the bill.

    • Phoenix44 permalink
      April 12, 2018 8:51 am

      Perhaps, but the energy companies would have been saying that in a vacuum, before Green subsidies meant prices started to bite and at a time when the doubling of oil prices had already increased people’s bills.

      And before the costs hit, who doesn’t want to be Green?

      The blame is entirely with government, that has put in place absurdly costly policies and refused to admit that these policies will cost anything.

  4. Peter F Gill permalink
    April 11, 2018 7:43 pm

    Of course energy ministers are not trying and never did try to hide the costs of support for renewable energy and then blame the energy companies for price hikes. To think differently could easily be interpreted as accusing energy ministers of bearing false witness. This clearly cannot be the case.

  5. Ian permalink
    April 11, 2018 7:51 pm

    But don’t you get the feeling that change is in the air? At some point soon, politicians may have to choose between “our NHS” and bungs to solar panel racketeers, between “bobbies on the beat” and importing wood pellets from the US. The ridicule must get through soon, surely?

    • Green Sand permalink
      April 11, 2018 8:02 pm

      Anybody willing to vote for Claire Perry et al? The only way to enact change is to change our politicians. Vote for LabLibCon and nothing will change, it will only get worse.

      • April 11, 2018 8:23 pm

        So who does that leave? Joke parties full of semi nutters like UKIP have become or the Greens who’ve always been nuts.

      • Mike Jackson permalink
        April 11, 2018 8:44 pm

        I keep saying this and get little credit (though I’m not really looking for any!): the only change will come when we make it come.

        If you don’t like what the three main parties get up to then pick the one that most closely fits your philosophy, and go out and join it.

        All three (even the Liberals though obviously less so) used to be mass-membership organisations who properly represented the views of the “coalition” that any party has to be to succeed. If our reaction to the word “politics” as to yawn, cough, turn over and go back to sleep then we can hardly blame the politicians when the professional lobbyists, the charities and the activist NGOs fill the gap.

        And to say they don’t listen is defeatist. If three hundred members turned up at the next selection committee meeting and made it clear that this (whatever “this” might be in context) is not what we expect from a Conservative/Labour/Liberal Democrat (delete as necessary) government there would be not just listening but acting.

        As ever, change will only happen when a majority want it to happen enough to make it happen. Or you simply get what those who are prepared to make things happen want to happen.

        And UK energy policy is a prime example of just that!

      • HotScot permalink
        April 11, 2018 11:10 pm

        David Johnson

        For my money, it leaves the UK Libertarian Party. Struggling little organisation devoted to small government, individual responsibility and freedom of expression.

        It’s far from perfect, at one point they had provision for gun ownership, but that seems to have gone now.

        I guess every party has small beginnings.

      • Phoenix44 permalink
        April 12, 2018 8:52 am

        The Tories are dreadful, but the alternatives are far worse. Unlike Brexit or US presidential elections, we are locked into the system.

      • Colin Brooks permalink
        April 12, 2018 11:36 am


        I went to the Libertarian party website after you mentioned them in another thread but I found them to be right thinking but truly naive and unelectable right now. Their message is all about constitutional issues (most of which I agree with by the way 🙂 ) and nothing that would gather any following among the great unwashed.

  6. April 11, 2018 8:31 pm

    I’ve just posted some interesting info about Claire Perry’s poor reputation .. (Please see previous smart meter thread)
    She’s got a history of doing one dumb dream policy after another
    “No wonder she’s credulous enough to believe the magic-beans-peddlers”

    Some more info
    I expected to find she secretly work for Goldman Sachs ..her ex was in hedgefunds
    but “Perry worked in banking and finance for Bank of America, McKinsey & Company and Credit Suisse”.

    What she said on What’s App about Tory MP’s who support Brexit was revealed

    “And I would hypothesise that they are mostly elderly retired men who do not have mortgages, school-aged children or caring responsibilities,
    so they represent the ** swivel-eyed few ** not the many we represent.”

    • April 11, 2018 8:32 pm

      Appply the rule about reversing the sexes ages in that bit
      It would not be acceptable.

      • April 11, 2018 9:14 pm

        In the US they’re called ‘deplorables’ i.e. anyone who doesn’t think like the accusers.

      • MrGrimNasty permalink
        April 11, 2018 9:24 pm

        Amazing isn’t it;- how the the Brexit vote win was supposedly stolen by Russian internet bots and dodgy mind bending data analytic firms raiding face book data, when the only people that apparently voted for Brexit are bald isolated senile men smelling of wee, too old and stupid to know what a PC is, let alone have a facebook account!

      • HotScot permalink
        April 11, 2018 11:13 pm


        You owe me a new keyboard! Snorted beer all over it at that comment.

        I’ll forgive you though, excellent.

      • Gerry, England permalink
        April 12, 2018 12:39 pm

        There must be quite a lot of us wee-smelling bald isolated (probably the wee smell) stupid old men given that we won the Brexit vote.

    • April 11, 2018 10:37 pm

      “Pixie” Perry treats anybody she disagrees with like a naughty 5 year old.

      Her actual debating skills appear to be non existent and her general style is imperious / peremptory / autocratic – any challenge seems to trigger some abuse as she heads off haughtily out of range…

      She has opinions that seem unfazed and uninformed by any inconvenient doubts triggered by indulging any curiosity about the world.

      She’s ambitious too.

      You might guess I am not a fan.

      • HotScot permalink
        April 11, 2018 11:18 pm


        “naughty 5 year old.”

        “imperious / peremptory / autocratic”

        “as she heads off haughtily out of range…”

        “She’s ambitious too.”

        Does she dress in leather and wield a whip on her days off y’think?

      • April 12, 2018 12:09 am


        more a brick in her handbag I suspect.

        I really don’t know if she’s acquainted with Max Mosely – you can try asking her on Twitter about her spare time – but @policescotland might take an interest 🙂

      • Gerry, England permalink
        April 12, 2018 12:39 pm

        I doubt it Hotscot – that would make her interesting and she certainly isn’t that.

    • Athelstan permalink
      April 12, 2018 9:46 am

      “Perry worked in banking and finance for Bank of America, McKinsey & Company and Credit Suisse”.

      No wonder the banking sector is up sh*t creek, she, perry and thousands of her felow gals, gumming up the works and bad decisions abounded – the 07/08 crash was an express train coming, there’s another crash being trained right now, ref Deutsche Bank, across the EU banking sector including the UK, a financial calamity again hurtling down the line.

      • Gerry, England permalink
        April 12, 2018 12:43 pm

        Budget deficit. National debt. And Pixie Perry had no idea what the difference was but was still a Treasury minister. The rumour was the job was supposed to go to somebody else but they got the names mixed up. I did think the only job she is fit for is working in a coffee shop but then she would get the change wrong, so that just leaves cleaning floors.

    • Mike Jackson permalink
      April 12, 2018 10:40 am

      I wonder what fate Perry has in mind for the swivel-eyed few like me — no mortgage, no dependent kids, over-70, no caring responsibilities — who voted remain?

      It would be nice to know where we fit into her world view. She’d probably blow a fuse!

      • Athelstan permalink
        April 12, 2018 11:31 am

        confused indeed, you made me smile Mr Mike, thank you for that.

  7. Green Sand permalink
    April 11, 2018 8:42 pm

    It leaves any but the above, stay with them and they will not change, they will support each other (the establishment) to keep the cartel.

  8. Green Sand permalink
    April 11, 2018 9:10 pm

    Mike Jackson permalink

    I have been there, done that, have the scars on my back! I am an ex Tory agent. These animals are different. The major 3 political parties are now that frit they have formed a unified front. It has been demonstrable for decades all 3 will use the establishment to quell any potential external ‘interlopers’ and I have witnessed how they deal with internal ‘interlopers’.

    Whilst I admire your “If three hundred members turned up at the next selection committee meeting and made it clear that this (whatever “this” might be in context) is not what we expect from a Conservative/Labour/Liberal Democrat (delete as necessary) government there would be not just listening but acting….”

    My experience is that the present parties are so scared they just override local votes. There will never be a better time to break this cartel. Just like we are leaving the EU because it is impossible to change it. Now is the time to leave the LibLabCon because it is also impossible to change it!

    • HotScot permalink
      April 11, 2018 11:43 pm

      Like I suggested above. Maybe try the UK Libertarian party.

      A leap of faith, but hey ho, our armed forces are knackered, education piss poor, higher education stupidly expensive, our energy policy is a joke, Brexit is a laugh a minute, and the NHS is on its knees. The original 8% VAT is now, astonishingly, 20% and instead of replacing personal taxation, it’s just been shuffled around a bit, with innumerable stealth tax additions.

      We’re the mugs supporting all this by imagining the Lib/Lab/Con cartel is anything other than a cartel. At least Farage gave them a run for their money as a non cartel member, and was the only one with the guts to stand up and tell the sycophantic European politicians they are all wankers.

      It’s high time politicians were banned from handing out subsidies altogether. If farmers can’t compete on the European market, there’s a vast internal market available to them. Fisherman would love to sell their catch fresh to the British public, but most catches are shipped off to Spain/Portugal etc. where they eat ‘weird’ fish, whatever that is.

      We can’t make cars anymore because the UK government completely shot the fox on that one by creating British Leyland, after decades of continuing, failing subsidies to British car makers. Doesn’t that tell us something?

      It’s high time we kicked out the concept of socialism once and for all. It doesn’t work, yet we are still churning away at it with climate change fantasy subsidies lining the pockets of rent seekers.

      Want a more informed opinion than mine?

      Try Matt Ridley.

      Here endeth the rant. However, if we want something to change, we must be bold.

      • Gerry, England permalink
        April 12, 2018 12:45 pm

        If the Libertarians support gun ownership then count me in.

      • HotScot permalink
        April 12, 2018 1:02 pm

        Gerry, England

        I looked at their manifesto recently, and it’s no longer there.

    • Mike Jackson permalink
      April 12, 2018 10:59 am

      I confess to never having been an agent, Green Sand, so my scars are not quite the same as yours.

      But I have been an active party member and twice we succeeded in over-riding a HQ-nominated parachutist by the simple expedient of asking the membership whether they wanted a local who knew the problems or a PPE graduate (in one case; I can’t remember exactly what was special about the other one — which in itself says something) who repeatedly demonstrated his ignorance of the constituency and its problems.

      We were told that he would make an excellent MP and we suggested that since he was from Dorset (where by coincidence they or somewhere close by were also looking for a candidate) he might be better off there than 500 miles away! He got “nul points” from us and I’ve never heard of him since.

      You can win but it takes numbers, patience, and a bit of deviousness. Sooner or later it has to happen or Britain will become a one-party state. It won’t happen in my lifetime but unless our grandchildren’s generation has more fire in its collective belly than our children do it will happen soon enough!

      • Green Sand permalink
        April 12, 2018 12:46 pm

        Yes Mike I have heard of similar success stories, though few and far between. In my local area we now have a young local MP, the first Consevative MP to be returned in the area since 1935, so he is on sound ground and a local party hero!

        However he is anti fracking, fully CO2 is evil etc.. pro the 2008 CCA and pro Sharia Law ‘for certain aspects’. One good point is he voted (or so he claims) for Brexit. To me the real probem is he could quite easily represent any of the LibLabCon.

        I accept that local action can be successful and NE Derbyshire is somewhat ‘unique’ (1935 etc) but basically what I am saying is, as there is no difference in the parties there can be no change.

        PS my spell as an agent was only at County level, that was enough!

  9. April 11, 2018 9:55 pm

    Of course once the people who cant pay freeze to death, they can get in people who are either on welfare or make enough money to pay…

    • roger permalink
      April 11, 2018 10:11 pm

      You mean the 48000 winter excess deaths this year?

      • HotScot permalink
        April 11, 2018 11:51 pm


        the forty’ish death number raises it’s ugly head once again.

        Wasn’t there forty’ish thousand premature deaths caused by diesel fumes not so long ago?

        Ripped apart because most of them were judged by the victims ability to live hours, or a few days, beyond that prescribed by a doctor.

        The headline would better have read “forty’ish thousand people would have lived 5 minutes longer were it not for diesel fumes.”

        I suspect the forty’ish thousand premature winter deaths fall into a similar category.

      • roger permalink
        April 12, 2018 8:26 am

        This was proclaimed on tv in the last two weeks by some woman professing to be the Chief Medical Officer, or similar title, as being 40000 to March and expected to be 48000 by end April.
        It appeared official to me at the time.

      • Gerry, England permalink
        April 12, 2018 12:47 pm

        The extra deaths number around 28000 as usually 20000 die each winter. So another success for Tory policy – increasing dead people over winter.

  10. markl permalink
    April 11, 2018 10:32 pm

    Here in the US we have Trump but he won’t last forever (bad and good). There’s a healthy movement to have a “Constitutional Convention” where the people can put sanity back into the government by directly over riding the Constitution and the government. Things like imposing term limits on legislators and judges, appointing judges by peoples’ vote, making anything Congress enacts applicable to them as well, limiting lobbyists, etc. All common sense changes that we all wish for but can’t get past Congress because they are self serving. In other words, putting government back into the hands of the people.

    • April 11, 2018 10:41 pm


      your bureaucrats are putting up quite a bit of resistance to hang on to their sinecures and long tolerated arbitrary powers…

    • HotScot permalink
      April 12, 2018 12:15 am


      It strikes me that there is nothing more self destructive than getting the people involved in politics.

      We elect politicians to make the decisions we don’t want to make. A free for all ‘peoples’ government is a recipe for yet more self serving individuals to get their fingers into pies they know nothing about.

      My desire is to reduce government interference in our lives, not increase it by introducing more amateur politicians into an already amateur political environment.

      A country is a business, not a political football. And whilst Churchill was a genuine, time served warrior, who was the man of the moment in a physical war, and every bit as unpopular amongst his brother politicians as Trump is now, he emerged a hero from the ashes of WW2.

      I consider Trump much the same. He’s the man of the moment, being a businessman first and foremost, in the most peaceful period of humanities history, largely predicated on trade.

      Whilst even some of his party faithful think he’s barmy, he’s the only one to have brought N. Korea to the negotiating table since the early 90’s I believe.

      He’s stood up to the climate fanatics and said ‘people come first’. He’s the only global leader to have said to the Russians, ‘yea, bring it on mate’ since the cold war ended and Putin rampaged across the globe spilling dirty money everywhere.

      Good for Trump! I love confrontation. It’s short and sharp. It provides a yes or no solution. Anything in between is prevarication and jobs for the political boys.

  11. Athelstan permalink
    April 12, 2018 12:40 am

    Razor stuff, an excellent post and filleting all done by PH.

    In the latest round of results once more Paul Homewood unbeaten takes the government to task and they remain, well and truly trashed.

    Paul Homewood 10/10, Claire Perry – slipped right off the monitor, it won’t be long before she’s relegated and it won’t be before time – either, the bigger question is, how long will theresa the war harpy manage to stay in a job. Not long we do hope..

    • Gerry, England permalink
      April 12, 2018 12:52 pm

      May will probably last until Brexit is delivered on 29 March 2019, assuming she does her usual about turn on what she says and accepts the Irish border solution the EC have put forward – the Wet border in the Irish Sea. Brexit hangs on this as ‘nothing is agreed until everything is agreed’. Once into transition her leave the Single Market policy will unravel and somebody with greater sense – I know, not a big ask – takes over and steers us to EEA/Efta safety.

  12. keith permalink
    April 12, 2018 10:14 am

    I would go as far to say that Perry is both incompetent, like most of our current ministers, e.g. Rudd, and a liar. The trouble is our press is also totally incompetent over energy issues, except Booker, who the Telegraph seems to be trying to stifle. So there is really little hope that we will see any parts of the media challenging the Government over this. They will just stay compliant to the lies being put out by the Government.

  13. CheshireRed permalink
    April 12, 2018 11:06 am

    Great work Paul.
    I’ve taken the trouble to Tweet Claire this post. I’m sure she’ll be delighted to receive it!

    • Athelstan permalink
      April 12, 2018 11:33 am

      nice one!

  14. April 12, 2018 3:56 pm

    Reblogged this on windfarmaction and commented:
    A well thought out analysis of the situation and a well deserved slap to Claire Perry MP and Energy and Climate Change Minister.

  15. Richard Phillips permalink
    April 13, 2018 4:47 pm

    Smart meters, of course, do nothing themselves to save money, merely tell the consumer, indirectly, to switch something off. They do not even tell the user what to switch off.
    Not noted on the list of “green” costs are the additional costs of National Grid to connect up all the wind farms in remote areas, and connect them to the Grid. It isn’t just a plug-in job!
    And there is no urgency, over decades, to take drastic action to reduce CO2. We have time to build the reactor fleet up to70%+ of our electricity, the balance coming from our own fracked gas, on and off shore.
    The turbines; all of them, no subsidies at all. Not all permanently connected to the grid, but called upon if the price is right, and they are needed.
    At the moment Renewables are built not to generate electricity for UK ltd. but profits for shareholders.
    Get in the queue!!
    Oh! and solar, another highly intermittent fairy tale.

    Richard Phillips

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