Fuel prices across the UK have been skyrocketing as a combined result of the post-pandemic recovery, extreme weather events and global politics. The UK has seen record prices for both electricity and natural gas, with prices for the latter increasing to more than six times the October 2020 prices. And since 2017, the average UK electricity bill has jumped from £593 to £765.
A number of energy suppliers went bust last year because of spiralling wholesale gas costs.
But some parts of the UK have been hit harder than others.
According to the latest data from the Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS), analysed by energy experts Boiler Central, Merseyside and North Wales have the highest electricity bills in the UK.
Costs faced by residents in these regions are nearly £50 higher than the average yearly electric bills for the whole of the UK and a full £100 a year more expensive than bills in Northern Ireland, the cheapest part of the UK when it comes to energy costs.
But Northern Ireland has also seen rapidly rising energy costs, with costs rising 36 percent since 2017 – faster than anywhere else in the UK.
On average, residents of Merseyside and North Wales pay £800 a year for their electricity.
Residents of North Scotland are faced with the second-highest bills in the UK, with households forking out £795 a year on electricity on average, or £66 per month.
Households in this region, which saw a hike of 7.4 percent in electricity prices in 2021, pay £30 more on average than the rest of the UK.
This is because Londoners have the highest yearly wages of all regions surveyed, at an average of £31,878.
Myles Robinson, energy expert at Boiler Central, said that it is becoming “impossible for families to meet these costs”.
He said: “The explosion of electricity costs across the UK is reaching a crisis point.
“With bills predicted to skyrocket a further £600 in the spring, it is becoming more and more impossible for families to meet these costs.
“Not only are energy prices rising for the nation, but several areas of the UK are already dealing with the consequences of regional differences in electricity bills.
“Energy generation across the UK isn’t equally powerful – while some regions have richer sources of fossil fuels and renewable energy, some regions struggle to generate energy as well as the rest of the UK, which leads to higher costs, and consumers having to pay a higher proportion of their wage towards energy.”
He added that the crisis is unlikely to ease off any time soon, saying that the UK is “likely to see rising bills for some time”.
He said: “While it’s important for consumers to do what they can to reduce their energy costs at home – including checking their properties are well insulated and seeing if there are quick fixes they can enact to reduce heat loss such as bleeding radiators, switching off lights, and looking into smart thermostats which make your energy use more cost-effective – unless the UK comes up with solutions on a larger scale to reduce the cost of energy, we are likely to see rising bills for some time”.