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Community / Reprieve for customers as district heating tariffs remain unchanged

THE COMPANY operating the district heating scheme in Lerwick will not be increasing its energy tariffs in the new financial year and will continue to charge a very competitive 6.9 pence per kilowatt/hour.

Shetland Heat Energy and Power’s (SHEAP) executive director Derek Leask said that despite the current energy crisis and escalating cost of domestic heating the company has been able to hold its prices for the second year in a row.

The news comes at a time when electricity bills are going through the roof while inflation at 5.5 per cent has reached a 30-year high.

Yesterday (Wednesday) councillors decided to freeze council tax and council house rents for a year when they voted against proposals for increases of three and 2.5 per cent respectively.

Leask said: “As a community based, local energy company we want to act responsibly given the high prices of energy Shetland consumers are currently facing.

“Although we have around 1050 domestic customers in Lerwick we also supply heat to the hospital, care homes, schools and many other public buildings that provide benefit to the whole of Shetland.

“We’ve done a lot of development work this year that ensures our energy mix is more efficient with reduced emissions. This enables us to hold our price at current levels.”

Leask added that it was likely for price adjustments to be made in March 2023 when prices will have been at the same level for three years.

“However, we will endeavour to keep these at a modest rate and customers won’t experience the dramatic hikes that other energy suppliers are having to impose,” he said.

SHEAP provides around a quarter of the energy used for heating and hot water in Shetland. The company is wholly owned by Shetland Charitable Trust.