Increasing heating oil prices are threatening rural economies and are set to cause more harm if communities do not buy ahead of time, due to increasing winter prices. These were the words of buying group, Community Buying unlimited.
Prices for heating oil rose by 70% in the run up to Christmas last year, as cold temperatures increased demand. The Met Office has predicted an even colder winter this year, which is why Community Buying unLimited is advising its members to buy ahead of the anticipated winter price increases. Heating oil prices stand at an average of 59p/litre, double the average cost of a litre in 2008.
Chris Pomfret, Founder of Community Buying unlimited said the recent warm weather would add to price rises: “This year a major new problem is emerging- residents have been lulled into a false sense of security by the recent mild temperatures. This has sent oil orders plummeting to a dangerously low level for the time of year. While we encouraged the UK’s heating oil buying groups to buy before the end of November, independent buyers have been delaying their orders, which could result in panic buying and serious shortages if a sudden cold snap hits.”
Oil is the most commonly used off-grid energy source for heating homes, and is the primary source of heat in approximately 1.7m UK households.