He called on the UK Government to take action to protect those worst affected.
Mr Morrice said the big energy companies claimed that standing charges covered their fixed costs such as meter reading, maintenance and keeping people connected to the network, as well as various social and environmental schemes. But he argued most consumers were unclear about the purpose of the charges, which are now being looked at by the independent energy market regulator, Ofgem.
He said: “These unfair and opaque energy standing charges are hitting vulnerable and low-income customers, many of whom are already living in fuel poverty. More needs to be done to protect customers and I welcome the fact that the independent energy regulator is consulting on potential changes as part of its wider review of the energy market.
“But I also believe it is vital that the government commits to take action to stop the big energy companies from ripping off their customers, not only on standing charges, but across the board.”