Decline in gas and electricity disconnections in early 2014

Up to 40% of disconnected sites were estimated to have been vacant

David Baker
by David Baker on 23rd May, 2014

Bord Gáis Energy and Electric Ireland have the highest rate of gas and electricity domestic disconnections respectively, according to the latest figures from the Commission for Energy Regulation (CER).

The CER’s Domestic Disconnections for Non-Payment of Account March 2014 report showed that Bord Gáis Energy’s rate of domestic gas disconnections stood at 9.46 per 10,000 customers while Electric Ireland’s domestic electricity disconnections stood at 5.70 per 10,000 customers.

March 2014 partly mirroring Q4 2013 findings

These figures partly continued a trend revealed by CER’s disconnection figures for Quarter 4 2013. Here, Electric Ireland also had the highest volume of domestic electricity disconnections (15.57) of all the key suppliers while SSE Airtricity had the highest number of domestic gas disconnections (22.66).

March 2014 figures show Electric Ireland (2.46 rate of domestic gas disconnections) and Bord Gáis Energy (2.03 rate of domestic electricity connections) had the lowest disconnection rates. Again, this partly mirrors figures for Quarter 4 2013 when Electric Ireland had the lowest rate for domestic gas disconnections (3.18) although SSE Airtricity held the lowest rate (10.54) for domestic electricity disconnections.

In the latest round of CER figures, Flogas Natural Gas sat just behind Bord Gáis Energy for its rate of domestic gas connections (9.14) while SSE Airtricity sat just behind Electric Ireland for its domestic electricity disconnections (5.03).

In total, there were 971 domestic electricity connections during the month, of which SSE Airtricity had the lowest number with 188.

There were also 479 domestic gas disconnections, of which Flogas Natural Gas had the lowest with 30. However 36% of disconnected gas sites and 40% of electricity sites were deemed to have been vacant.

Moratorium impacts figures while CER review focuses on next steps

The CER highlighted that a moratorium on domestic gas and electricity disconnections spanning from January 2014 to February 2014 would influence the level of disconnections in March 2014. It also went on to say that as this was not in place in 2013 ‘a comparison with 2013 is not appropriate in this instance’.

The moratorium was introduced by the CER, while it, in conjunction with industry, reviewed market processes for domestic disconnections to see if any further actions could be taken to reduce disconnections.

As part of this process CER revealed it made a commitment for monthly reporting of domestic disconnections notes, of which March 2014 is the first.

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