- 32 updates
Energy prices need to be frozen for almost two years because utility companies are "overcharging people", Ed Miliband has told Daybreak.
The Labour leader had written to energy companies to encourage them to "make yourself part of the solution" and build public confidence.
Labour leader Ed Miliband has accused the energy companies of peddling "scare stories" about the potential impact of freezing energy prices for two years.
Mr Miliband dismissed suggestions that his plans were similar to the attempted restructuring of the energy industry in California in 2000, which had to be scrapped amid widespread price rises, power shortages and company insolvencies.
He told Daybreak: "California was a totally different approach. It was a deregulated approach, not the kind of approach we are talking about.
"This system can work, it will work, it must work and we are going to make sure it works."
Mr Miliband said: "These are people who are overcharging people and so of course they are going to say when someone calls time on it they are not very happy.
"I've written to them today to say, 'Look, come on, make yourself part of the solution not the part of the problem.'
"I am determined to stand up to the energy companies, to get a fair deal for consumers and also get the investment that this country needs."
Mr Miliband said: "That is why we will freeze energy bills until the start of 2017 and then we will sort out the way the energy market works to stop people being overcharged.
"That is where my focus is this morning."
Labour leader Ed Miliband has urged energy companies to work with the party over plans for a price freeze.
Mr Miliband told company bosses: "I appreciate that you will not welcome all aspects of this package."
The Labour leader has reportedly written to energy bosses warning them that if they do not work with him on his plans to freeze prices or they can risk reinforcing the idea that they are 'part of the problem', according to Sky News Political Correspondent Sophy Ridge:
Labour's shadow business secretary Chuka Umunna told the BBC's Newsnight that claims the policy could see the lights go out was "patently absurd" and "nonsense".
The UK is one of just a handful of countries which score an "AAA" rating for secure, affordable and environmentally-friendly energy, a UN-accredited study has found.
The country came fifth out of 129 countries in the World Energy Council's (WEC) energy sustainability index this year, falling three places as it has seen "small declines" in the security of supplies and affordability of energy.
But the UK is only one of two countries, along with Switzerland which topped the index overall, to be ranked in the top 20 on all three sections of the "trilemma" of achieving security, equity and environmental sustainability in energy supplies.
Centrica, which operates British Gas, suggested it would not be able to continue to supply household energy if Ed Miliband's plan to freeze prices came into force.
"If prices were to be controlled against a background of rising costs it would simply not be economically viable for Centrica, or indeed any other energy supplier, to continue to operate and far less to meet the sizeable investment challenge that the industry is facing," a statement said.
"The impact of such a policy would be damaging for the country’s long term prosperity and for our customers.”
British Gas' residential business increased profits by 3.2% to £356 million in the first half of this year, Centrica announced in July.
Latest ITV News reports
As Ed Miliband clashes with the energy giants on prices, it is worth knowing how your expensive energy bills are actually made up.
A leading competition lawyer says an energy price freeze could leave Labour open to challenges from the courts or the European Commission.