Today I challenged the Chief Secretary to the Treasury Simon Clarke in the House of Commons on the Government’s failure to support those on lower incomes who will be hit hardest by rising energy bills. Everybody will be affected but, as I pointed out, too many families are already having to choose between heating and eating – a situation that will only get worse
North Sea gas and oil producers are profiting from increased energy prices at the expense of normal people, and so we need a windfall tax on these profits. This would allow the Government to increase the Warm Homes Discount to £400 and extend eligibility which, with a cut in VAT on energy bills, would provide around £600 a year for over 9 million households.
While this would fix the immediate problem, we also need to go further to fix the underlying problem by properly regulating the energy market, rebalancing out energy production away from our disproportionate dependence on gas, and reducing consumption through the massive programme of retro-insulating homes to which Labour is committed.