Business Secretary Vince Cable has said that calls for the Government to axe green policies in the hope of bringing down the price of energy are "short-sighted and foolish".
He was responding to a suggestion by the chief executive of energy firm SSE that Britain should consider "retreating from decarbonisation".
Mr Cable told BBC Radio 4's Today programme: "The rise in energy prices is due to a whole variety of things, by far the most important of which is what's happening in world energy markets.
"We've had over a period of years very rapidly rising demand in Asia, particularly in China, we've had restrictions on supply from countries like Iran."
He added: "If you are taking a long-term view about shifting the British economy on to a less polluting, less carbon-based system, we have to provide those [green] incentives."
After SSE announces gas and electricity tariffs will prices will rise next month, other big energy firms refuse to rule out own price hikes.
Some tips on how to save money on your energy bills.