Tens of millions of people are facing a “dramatic and catastrophic winter” ahead of the increase on the energy price cap.
Half of all UK households are being warned that by January they could be in fuel poverty, said EDF managing director Philippe Commaret.
There will be no way that millions will be able to pay for their energy bills and the National Grid are to hold an exercise to test the UK’s resilience in the event of a gas supply emergency.
EDF are launching a campaign to help customers save money on bills with energy saving measures.
The war in Ukraine along with the economic isolation of gas-producing Russia has driven up prices and has created uncertainty with international supply.
“We face, despite the support that the Government has already announced, a dramatic and catastrophic winter for our customers,” Commaret told BBC Radio 4’s Today.
“In fact, in January half of the UK households might be in fuel poverty. That’s the reason why we want to take actions in order to do everything we can do in order to help our customers.
“So, we are announcing today that we are going to launch a campaign in order to reach hundreds of thousands of our customers to provide them further support to help them cut their costs, but also make sure that they are accessing all the available support that is available for them.”
Energy industry consultants Cornwall Insights are warning that households are facing an 80% increase with their bill over the winter and on Friday Ofgem will announce the new level of the price cap.
From 1 October households have been warned that energy prices will hit £3,554 and will then rise to £4,650.
The coldest months of the year which are between October and April will see the average household paying the equivalent of £4,102 a year for their energy bills.
Boris Johnson and his government have not announced any immediate help for households and no major decisions will be made until a new Prime Minister has been announced next month.
Liz Truss has promised green levies whilst Rishi Sunak has said he will remove VAT from energy bills.
Commaret said, “I think that all ideas in order to keep the bills for customers flat are really important and have all to be considered.
“There is not only one lever to be pulled but all levers have to be pulled right now because we face a catastrophic winter.”