Government confirms Alternative Fuel Payments mechanism for domestic heating oil users

The government confirmed today how the £100 fixed Alternative Fuel Payment for domestic heating oil users will be administered.

Initially announced as part of the government’s Energy Prices Bill measures, the scheme is intended to deliver a one-off payment of £100 to UK households who are not on the mains gas grid and therefore use alternative fuels, such as heating oil, to heat their homes.

The UK and Ireland Fuel Distributors Association (UKIFDA), our trade association, have been working with the government to help advise on the most effective and immediate way to administer the funds to heating oil users, given the differences in the structure of the heating oil market compared with that for gas and electricity.

It has now been confirmed by government that the £100 payment will be delivered through customers’ electricity bills rather than via fuel distributors, under a similar delivery model to the Energy Bills Support Scheme.

The government will set out the timing of this payment soon.

UKIFDA continue to offer support to the government in the design of the payment system through electricity companies. It is also noted that some heating oil customers may not have a relationship with an electricity supplier. Again, UKIFDA’s consultations with government will ensure that customers in this bracket are provided a suitable alternative route, and do not miss out. Details of this alternative route will be confirmed by the government shortly.

Similarly, discussions with government are also continuing regarding the mechanism to provide support for non-domestic consumers who are not able to receive support for their heating costs through the Energy Bill Relief Scheme, as they use heating oil or alternative fuels instead of gas. UKIFDA are in active dialogue with government about how best to administer these payments. Further detail will be published as soon as it is available.