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Continued increases in world gas prices lead to tariff rise for Ten Towns Network area

Due to further increases in global wholesale gas prices, firmus energy has today announced a 38.18% increase to the natural gas tariff in the Ten Towns Network area. This will take effect from the 3rd December 2021.

Wholesale global gas prices have increased by 430% from a year ago and by 136% since the previous tariff review that came into effect on the 1st October.

Today’s announced change in tariff will mean an extra £4.89 per week[1] on to the average household bill.

The Ten Towns Network area includes Antrim, Armagh, Ballymena, Ballymoney, Banbridge, Coleraine, Craigavon (including Lurgan and Portadown), Limavady, Derry/Londonderry, Newry, and more than 25 other towns and villages in the surrounding areas.

Dr David Dobbin, Chairman of firmus energy, said:

“We very much regret having to increase our tariff however steep increases in global wholesale gas prices have forced our hand.

“This is a not a firmus issue, but a challenge faced by every local and national supplier of gas and electricity all of whom, sooner or later, will have to further increase their prices to meet the huge upsurges which have taken place in wholesale energy costs.

“We know this is an unwelcome increase which will have a disproportionate effect on those of our customers who are the most vulnerable. We have been consulting with key stakeholders and will be introducing a support scheme to be delivered through a local charity which will offer targeted help to those most in need, especially over the winter period.   The scheme will be launched in the coming weeks and will go live around the same time as the increase we announced today takes effect. If any of our customers feel that they require further support, they should contact us directly to see how we can help.”

Customers seeking advice on their natural gas bills or direct debit payments should contact the firmus energy Customer Services team on 0330 024 9000. Our telephone lines are open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. For free and independent advice on how to save energy, please contact NI Energy Advice Line on 0800 111 4455.

  • [1] This is based on typical Medium Home Consumption Value of 12,000kWh per year as published by OFGEM. £4.89 is based on a typical firmus energy network home PAYG customer. A typical firmus energy network home credit customer will increase by £5.15 per week.

ENDS

Media contact: Open Strategic Communications:

Ross Williamson               ross@oscni.com              44 (0) 7734 821 070

Kelly McVeigh                   kelly@oscni.com              44 (0) 7580 850 224

Johnny Stewart                 johnny@oscni.com          44 (0) 7785 458 136

 

Notes to editors:

  • firmus energy is a regulated business and this price increase follows a tariff review process that is carried out by firmus energy and the Utility Regulator, in consultation with the Department for the Economy and the Consumer Council for Northern Ireland.
  • As part of this process the Utility Regulator has scrutinised firmus energy’s actual costs to supply gas to homes and businesses in the Ten Towns Network area.
  • firmus energy is a natural gas distribution and supply company, based in Antrim. Since 2005, firmus energy has connected over 50,000 customers in its network area (outside Greater Belfast) and supplies natural gas to over 108,000 across Northern Ireland.
  • The Ten Towns area includes Antrim, Armagh, Ballymena, Ballymoney, Banbridge, Coleraine, Craigavon (including Lurgan and Portadown), Limavady, Derry/Londonderry, Newry and more than 25 other towns and villages in the surrounding areas.
  • This tariff announcement does not apply to the Greater Belfast or West network areas.
  • There is a clear ambition to reduce Carbon Dioxide (CO2) emissions in Northern Ireland. Every home can benefit from an immediate CO2 reduction of up to 52% when they switch their home heating system from a 15-year-old Sedbuk F oil boiler without controls to a new Sedbuk A natural gas boiler with heating controls used correctly.

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