Hot water outages, hugely inflated bills, a broken metre, and terrible service. This has been the experience of Kabir Dhawan, who bought a one-bed London flat in 2014 and was signed up the the District Heating network. ''I was told it was supplied by an energy-efficient scheme and was given a written promise that the costs would be no higher than for a conventional gas supply,'' he says. ''Instead, we are paying around 900 pounds a year, including standing charges.''
Dhawan is one of many customers who have found themselves struggling with inflated energy bills and unreliable service from The District Heating network, which supplies 220,000 households on estates across the country. The network is supposed to be leading the way towards sustainable energy in the UK, but it is currently unregulated, unaffordable and unfair.
Energy customers tied into lengthy 25-year contracts are finding themselves stung by prices as high as three times the expected rate. Four out of five are unable to seek support for their rights from the Energy Obudsman.
The government has previously refused to regulate the District Heating network, claiming they didn't want to strangle the new intitiative. But customers facing decades of unaffordable pricing and poor service, it's time for the government to step in.
Please sign this petition to demand that the government regulate the District Heating network in order to protect people from extortionate rates. If enough people sign, it will send a clear message that we want our government to protect UK energy customers from cold homes and empty wallets.
The Rt Hon Greg Clark MP:
The District Heating network is a great initiative for our environment and future. However, it is not providing a fair or affordable service to customers.
It's time for the government to regulate the District Heating network. With customers stuck on long-term contracts, they desperately need protection from high prices and poor quality provision.