Date posted: 25.10.22

Cost of Living – Heating, Eating And Other Issues

As we manufacture heating appliances, we like to be very in tune with various economic and environmental issues. Staying warm is becoming expensive. Too expensive for some, and the fuel of choice used to stay warm is under growing scrutiny – and for very good reason – we need to reduce our carbon footprint.

While the various political issues over the last few months have caused havoc, a new Prime Minister in place hopefully offers more stability moving forwards.

Cost of Living Crisis EMERGENCY

Some councils around the UK have already declared a Cost of Living EMERGENCY. It didn’t seem that long ago when we were talking about the dreaded 1st October energy price cap taking effect and what’s going to happen. Then came the infamous “mini-budget”, which ultimately contributed to the downfall of Lizz Truss. We are heading into the colder, shorter days. For many, sadly, things will get worse. Despite the (hopefully) positive changes at the top of government, things are not going to be easy for a long while.

Here is what’s going on around the UK with the current issues:

Milton Keynes – According to Milton Keynes council, one in five adults can’t afford to pay their bills, with councillors working hard to push for additional support for their community.

Norfolk – In Norfolk, a collective of over 100 organisations that offer welfare support have declared a Cost of Living emergency with a 1,300% increase in demand for debt help.

Exeter – Councillors have declared a Cost of Living emergency in Exeter. There are a number of testimonials from a food bank in Exeter which brings to light people’s struggles; some are unable to visit the dentist, pay for pet insurance, or feed children 3 meals a day. The testimonials continue…

Stroud – Some £100,000 has been pledged in Stroud to help the most vulnerable in society. This is on top of the £252,000 already received from Gloucestershire County Council. Council leader Catherine Braun (G, Wotton-under-Edge) said: “We know that many more people are struggling with cost of living pressures, and it’s important that they know local help is available to them.”

Isle of Wight – A councillor has estimated that over 50% of the island’s residents could be in food or energy distress come the winter.

Carlisle – Following a meeting on 11th October, councillors have declared a cost-of-living emergency in Carlisle. Councillor Ruth Alcroft, said: “I think it’s clear many people in Britain are facing a really tough time. It’s vital we acknowledge our role as city councillors in the challenges we are facing here in the city. Talking with my colleagues, many of us know residents who, because of the rising housing costs, fuel costs, in food prices, are under pressure in their day-to-day lives. The phrase, heating or eating is sadly, becoming a desperate reality for too many.”

Rises Food Prices

The lowest-cost groceries have become 17% more expensive, according to the ONS (Office of National Statistics). Vegetable oil has increased 65% this year, while pasta has seen a 60% rise. Tea has increased by 46%, bready by 39% and biscuits by 34%. The price increases in food is forcing family budgets to breaking point. Giving them less for things like energy – which is also going up. Food prices are rising at their fastest rate since 1980. The increase in vegetable oil is especially bad for restuanats and takeaways, as they use it in abundance. Ukraine and Russia account for around 60% of sunflower oil production globally. Since the war there have been huge supply issues, which has driven up the price of this specific oil.

Rising Energy Prices

The government’s Energy Price Guarantee, which limited the price that suppliers can charge for a unit of energy, was originally put in place for two years from 1 October. However, it will not only be in place for a period of six months. This means that potential energy prices could be almost £4,400 by April 2023 unless there is further support from the government. The details of which, if any, are still to be confirmed. The need for heating efficiency from this, an economic perspective, and also an environmental perspective, has never been so paramount.

Below are links to a few articles which can help you save with your heating:

Burning and storing wood
Useful stove tips and ideas
Keeping Warm on a Budget
Prepare your home for autumn

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