Leeds City Council looking to switch on with its own energy services company
Plans for Leeds City Council to explore creating its own energy services company to help people save money on their fuel bills will be considered next week.
At the meeting of the executive board at Civic Hall on 23 September, senior councillors will be asked to approve the council starting the process of looking to establish its own domestic energy services company (LESCo) which could save households in Leeds up to £200 a year.
Under the proposals, the council would look to form a partnership with an existing energy provider, and would then offer competitive energy tariffs to customers under the brand identity of the new company, which would clearly by endorsed and promoted by Leeds City Council.
The focus of the scheme is to help people pay less for their energy and to help reduce the number of homes in Leeds described as ‘fuel poor’, which in 2013 stood at 11.6 per cent of all households in the city compared to a national average of 10.4 per cent.
The scheme would also promote properties replacing outdated, inflexible and inefficient pre-payment meters with the latest ‘smart’ pay-as-you-go alternatives. These new meters offer easy to understand information on energy consumption, which has shown to help householders reduce their energy use bringing about cost savings as well as cutting the amount of CO2 produced which aids the environment.
Leeds City Council executive member for regeneration, transport and planning Councillor Richard Lewis said:
“Setting up this company would be an innovative way of helping people pay less for their energy and save money with an offer which clearly comes from Leeds City Council.
“It would be for anyone in Leeds but one of the aims would be to lower the number of households in the city in fuel poverty, as well as helping to protect the environment so we are very keen to make it happen.”
Leeds City Council would help to market and promote the tariffs offered by the new company, but the costs to the council would be minimal as managing customer services and customer accounts would be the responsibility of the energy partner.
The council has recently carried out soft market testing on the viability of the plan, with the decision now to be made on advertising for a viable energy partner to form the company with. Should a suitable partner be found, the new LESCo could be operational from April 2016.
Notes to editors:
The LESCo idea follows on from previous council-led schemes ‘Wrap Up Leeds’ and ‘Better Homes Leeds’ which have helped residents to insulate their homes and install modern, controllable heating.
To further boost the environment, the council would encourage the chosen partner to deliver energy efficiency schemes and also look to source power from local renewable generators such as community energy projects.
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Leeds City Council communications,
Tel: 0113 247 5472