ADUR and Worthing are the first councils in West Sussex to launch a community energy switching campaign.
Working in partnership with iChoosr, the driving force behind collective switching schemes, the councils launched the campaign at Worthing Town Hall last week.
The scheme invites residents across Adur and Worthing to join by registering online at www.adur-worthing.gov.uk/energy-switch to save money on their home energy bills. People can register their interest up to February 17.
Bart Stevens from iChoosr said: “We have been active in Europe since 2008 with organising collective switching schemes with local authorities.
“Over a million people have joined our schemes so far. Our model is now applicable in Great Britain, where local authorities like Adur and Worthing are well placed to help local residents manage their high energy bills.”
Shoreham and Southwick residents who don’t have access to the internet won’t lose out, as they can call the energy switch hotline on 01903 221122 or pop into the Help Point at Adur Civic Centre, in Ham Road, Shoreham.
Adur Council chairman Mike Mendoza joined the councils’ energy champions Cllr Tom Wye and Cllr Dave Simmonds at the launch event.
Mr Simmonds, Adur cabinet member for health and wellbeing, said: “We are extremely excited to be part of the Ready to Switch scheme and to work with iChoosr for a big community switch.
“Helping our residents reduce their monthly outgoing and starting a process to help those most in need address real fuel poverty is very important to us.”
Mr Wye, Worthing Borough Council’s cabinet member for health and wellbeing, said the scheme would benefit the councils as well as residents.
“As well as the economic and well-being benefits for people already on lower energy tariffs, the councils will receive £5 for every single person switching a utility under this scheme,” he explained.
“Although the scheme is self-financing, if there is any surplus we will plough this back to help our vulnerable residents who do not regularly switch or are in need of better energy deals due to their circumstances.”