End of the winter break: EDF gives up cutting off electricity in the event of unpaid


The supplier will deliver power to cover a few essential uses: lighting, supplying a refrigerator and recharging a telephone.

This year, the end of the winter break, Friday April 1, will no longer be synonymous with concern for EDF customers who are struggling to pay their bills: the supplier will no longer cut off the electricity. A commitment announced in November that the associations want to see generalized.

By doing this, EDF goes further than its regulatory obligations outside the winter break period, by replacing the cut with a power limitation at 1 kVA“Said a spokesperson for the supplier. This power represents a kind ofminimal duty» pending the regularization of the customer’s situation, enough to ensure the essentials: lighting, operating a refrigerator and recharging a telephone.

Cuts were already prohibited during the winter break, which will end at the end of March. They will therefore no longer be applied by the incumbent supplier at all, all year round. EDF is not the first supplier to announce such a measure, demanded by associations fighting against precariousness. The small operator Plum had already taken this initiative.

254,000 consumers concerned in 2021

But many suppliers remainvery reluctant to abolish power cuts» and engaged «dilatory thoughtsregrets Manuel Domergue, director of studies at the Abbé-Pierre Foundation. “We expect the government to make a decision, whether it depends on the good will or not of certain electricity suppliers; it is considered a fundamental right to have a minimum of electricity at home“, he told AFP.

In 2021, 254,000 consumers were cut off for unpaid electricity, according to figures from the National Energy Ombudsman. “There is a very clear tension linked both to the precariousness of certain sections of the population, in connection with the Covid in particular, and the rise in energy prices. All this makes it stuck for hundreds of thousands of householdsremarks Manuel Domergue.

According to him, the government is preparing a decree to impose two months of power reduction before any cut for the most precarious households, those who receive the energy check. A good start, but not enough for the Abbé-Pierre Foundation, which calls for a general ban on cuts. Another major operator, Engie, for its part, has undertaken to “massively deploy power reductions to 1 kVA from this spring of 2022.»

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