While Ed Miliband and the energy companies square up to each other, it's worth knowing how your expensive energy bills are actually made up.
Breakdowns vary a little from company to company, but this detail from Scottish Power gives a flavour.
On a £100 pound average energy bill:
- £50 goes to the cost of energy, the wholesale cost that the energy companies themselves don't control
- £21 goes to getting the power to your home - these costs, for example the National Grid, are regulated by the authorities and have been increasing significantly
- £15 goes on green levies, decided by the Government to go to projects like installing insulation for vulnerable customers - this also includes the VAT
- £10 goes on costs of customer service, metering, call centres and the like
- £4 goes on profit - and it is out of that amount that cash to spend on new power stations and infrastructure must come