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EON Fined £3M by Ofgem for Illegal Sale of Light Bulbs

11 Jul 2013

Regulator Ofgem has fined EON £3m for selling energy efficient lights bulbs that should have been provided for free under the Carbon Emissions Reduction Target legislation (CERT). CERT was implemented to ensure the ‘Big Six’ help consumers reduce their carbon footprint and, after an Ofgem investigation, EON was found to have breached its reporting obligations by selling these light bulbs in the Republic of Ireland and providing false information about the amount they had distributed.

Sarah Harrison, Ofgem’s Senior Partner in charge of enforcement said: “This case leaves companies in no doubt that Ofgem takes reporting failures seriously. Accurate company reporting is essential to Ofgem’s effective administration of the government’s environmental schemes”.

EON apologised for the error and put it down to inadequate management reporting systems but said they had made up the lost carbon to fulfil their obligations under the CERT legislation. Tony Cocker, Chief Executive said: “We are sorry that these mistakes were made in 2010 and Ofgem has received a board-level assurance that the necessary changes have been made”.

Ofgem has ordered the German owned energy giant to pay £2.5m of the fine to around 18,500 consumers who are struggling with their bills, amounting to £135 per household. This will allow them to improve energy efficiency in their home rather than the money going to the Treasury. The remaining £500k penalty reflects the serious nature of exaggerated reporting and breaching legal obligations.