Does anyone else think that the UK energy market is broken? I get my domestic electricity from a renewable electricity supplier who generates a significant proportion of their electricity from renewable sources, mainly wind.

As the cost of electricity has risen from all the major suppliers over the last few months, our supplier has raised their prices in line with the others, despite the fact they rely less on oil to generate their electricity. Economists (and the government) often argue that market forces will drive the behaviour of energy (and other) markets so the government does not need to intervene with regulation, funding and other mechanisms to alter the market.

But, if renewable electricity suppliers need to/are allowed to raise their prices because of the rising costs of oil, how can the market be functioning properly? When oil prices rise and I’m sourcing my electricity from a renewable source, surely I should be at least buffered against the rising oil prices, if not completely protected? I’m sure there are perfectly good reasons why this is all the way it is, but for me it still begs the question: How can demand influence the energy market when consumer choice makes zero impact?

I know I could join a community energy cooperative, install my own micro-generation devices, or find another way to influence the market and protect myself against the rising cost of oil – and I’m certainly not discounting doing those things. But I do think there is an interesting discussion to be had about how and why what is essentially price-fixing can be permitted in this marketplace, one of the most important in influencing Britain’s carbon footprint.

Do other countries have different models that allow energy consumer choices to affect the energy market directly?