Bord Gáis customers face higher bills as gas, electricity prices rise

Record natural gas prices amid a supply squeeze are blamed for latest increase

Bord Gáis blamed the record cost of energy for the decision. Photograph: iStock

Bord Gáis blamed the record cost of energy for the decision. Photograph: iStock

 

Bord Gáis Energy customers are facing higher energy bills as the company becomes the latest utility provider to increases electricity and gas prices.

The hikes will see a 12 per cent increase in the gas unit rate and standing charge, with a 10 per cent increase in electricity charges. Both will come into effect on October 24th.

The company said the new charges will mean an increase of just over €8 on the typical gas bill, with electricity customers seeing an additional €10 per month on an average bill.

The latest price rise will see Bord Gáis customers paying almost 28 per cent more for gas than last winter, and close to 24 per cent more for electricity.

It is the second time this year that the company has raised prices but it gave an assurance that it would not announce any further increases at least until the spring.

Bord Gáis blamed the record cost of energy for the decision. The wholesale price of natural gas has surged 250 per cent since the start of the year. Meanwhile, European supplies are 16 per cent below the average over the past five years, causing concern in the market.

Gas also accounts for more than half of the electricity generated in Ireland, a figure that has risen this year as calm conditions hampered the contribution of wind power to the grid.

Bord Gáis Energy’s managing director Dave Kirwan said the company regretted the price hike.

“We are experiencing an extremely uncertain energy market right now and we know our customers are concerned about that,” he said. “We regret that we have to pass through a price increase at this time, but we have taken steps to protect our customers against further movement during the colder winter months ahead.”

Hold prices

Bord Gáis isn’t the only energy provider to raise its prices, with Energia announcing last week that it would increase charges for electricity and gas by 15.7 per cent and 18.5 per cent respectively, on top of two rounds of price increases earlier in the year. Others, such as Panda Power and Pinergy, have raised prices four times already this year.

The new price rises will put hard-pressed consumers under further pressure. Earlier this week, the Society of St Vincent de Paul expressed concern about the impact of increasing utility bills on low-income households.

Taoiseach Micheál Martin has said the Government plans to introduce measures in the budget next month to protect people on lower incomes from the impact of rising energy costs.