The Isle of Man has announced imminent electricity price hikes, which threaten to compromise the cost of cheap energy.
Treasury minister Allan Bell announced in his 2010 budget speech that electricity prices will go up by seven per cent in September as part of new wide-reaching measures aimed at plugging a £90 million budget shortfall.
Rising costs of electricity from energy suppliers are expected to hit consumers hard, especially in the face of the economic downturn.
Campaign groups warned that the energy price hikes are going to be particularly unwelcome for vulnerable groups on a fixed income.
Speaking to BBC News, Penny Creighton, chief executive of Age Concern, said that many senior citizens are faced with the stark choice of "heating or eating".
According to estimates from energyhelpline.com, the recent cold snap, which submerged the whole of Britain in freezing temperatures, pushed the average January fuel bill up by almost 50 per cent to £227.
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