ACE first raised the issue in 1999, when it criticised Scottish and Southern Electricity for offering an air mile for each £6 of electricity used (ENDS Report 289, p 31 ). ACE pointed out that this would discourage consumers from reducing their energy use, as well as promoting greater use of a highly polluting form of transport.
Five years later, Scottish and Southern is now offering an incentive of one air mile for every £2 spent on either gas or electricity. ACE says the company is "directly encouraging profligacy".
ACE also criticises Powergen for offering a Tesco club card point for every £1 spent on gas or electricity. However, it has no objection to EdF's policy of rewarding customers with Nectar points - redeemable at stores including Sainsbury's and Debenham's - because these are allocated according to how long customers stay with the company, rather than how much energy they use.