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Striking the right balance

25 June 2020

Striking the right balance [ 470 kb]

Local area energy plans are becoming increasingly common across Great Britain. Citizens Advice is the statutory advocate for energy consumers. In this paper we start to explore what issues these plans cover, and how people can understand and engage with them. We are interested in how decisions about activities and actions in local area energy plans are made, and how much they cost. We want to know more about how these costs can be recovered in a fair way. They shouldn’t disproportionately fall on those who can least afford it.

Activities related to energy and climate change could play a significant role as local authorities and city regions begin to consider how to stimulate economic recovery following the COVID-19 pandemic and lockdown. Local area energy plans could also play a vital role in the UK meeting its target of achieving net zero carbon emissions by 2050. We are keen to ensure that these plans put energy consumers at their heart, so people can benefit from locally-tailored approaches to the energy transition.

As a competitive market that has traditionally been strategically managed and planned at the national level, a move to more local energy decision-making is significant. We want to see it put consumers in a better place - whether that's in relation to customer experience, consumer protections or costs