The Co-Operative to enter the energy market while shouting the word 'fair'
The Co-Operative have decided to enter the energy market with a simple, single tariff which they think will be consistently fair and competitive. Basically, this gives them the chance to be smug in the face of all those other energy providers who rip us all off every chance they get.
They've called it the Pioneer tariff, which is named after the Rochdale 'pioneers' who founded the first co-operative in 1844, which is vaguely infuriating and self-congratulatory.
Co-Operative Energy have said that there'll be no penalties for switching to a different provider and that new customers won't be getting preferential treatment over existing customers with cheaper offers and the like.
They've said that the climate of multi-tariff offers is "baffling and bewildering" and that, instead of being greedy beggars, they'll include a twice-yearly profit-sharing deal for all its customers, who will own the business. It sounds like the energy equivalent of a hippie commune (which means that Co-Op energy will either have to get nasty, fast or indeed, go out of business when the big boys start playing rough with them).
The dippy dream doesn't stop there. Electricity will be sourced from low-carbon generators as well as wind and hydro sources, and by April 2012, they hope that customers will be able to power their homes purely on a sense of self-satisfaction.
Co-operative Energy's Nigel Mason said: "It is time this industry had a radical shake up. Customers have been bamboozled by complicated tariffs and confused by changing prices and unfair contracts, and it has to stop. We are determined to provide a fair and transparent service for Co-operative Energy customers and to let them share in the profits. We are campaigning for long-overdue reform in the energy industry."
The Co-Op are also ratting on the others by saying that us plebs don't know how much we're paying for our energy, which will see Co-Op Energy providing us with a price-comparison website so we can all work out who is offering the cheapest deal.
While the Co-Op won't provide the cheapest deal for all, they are promising to provide the most consistent in terms of billing. We'll see if people like morals more than offers in due course.