The Energy Networks Association (ENA) has responded to claims by a think tank that they are making excessive profits.

The Energy and Climate Change Intelligence Unit (ECIU) said the six companies that transport electricity to Britain’s homes and businesses made annual average profit margins of 32% over the last six years.

This equates to about £10bn on the nation’s collective energy bill over six years (2010-15), or around £27 per home per year.

However, the ENA said that since the start of the current price control period in 2015 (RIIO-ED1) costs have fallen by an average £8.50 per household per year, whilst companies will invest £25 billion in the network that delivers electricity into homes and businesses now and well into the future.

“Ths investment is driving improved performance, with the UK benefitting from one of the most reliable networks in the world. Ofgem’s report on the period 2010-2015 calculated the average return of DNOs to be 12% and since 2015 the companies earn returns of around 9% on average, a sizeable part of which is reliant on companies achieving efficiency savings shared with consumers,” it said.

‘Outdated and incomplete data’

It said the report “uses outdated and incomplete data”.

ENA Chief Executive David Smith said, “The UK’s energy networks have a strong track record of consistently delivering for our households, businesses and communities.

They are amongst the most reliable in the world and their performance has never been better.”

“The report has ignored the current price control period which began in 2015 and determines how much companies invest in the electricity network and the cost to customers.”

> See the ENA's statement