2 August 2022

BP’s £7bn profit is a slap in the face to those struggling to keep the lights on

Even more reason to eat the rich... Well, considering the rise in living costs, we’ll soon probably have to resort to that.

Energy giant BP saw their profits triple between April and June, reaching almost £7bn. The news comes as typical household energy bills are forecast to hit a mammoth £3,600 a year this winter, as reported by Cornwall Insight.

The huge profits have resulted in calls for the government to further tax energy firms to support families with rising bills. BP’s bumper profits were the second highest for quarter two in the firm’s history, while those of us at home can barely afford basic human needs.

The founder of energy supplier Ecotricity, Dale Vince, said BP was “holding a shedload of money that is coming from hard-pressed bill-payers in our country.” Before calling for increased taxation on the profits of energy companies. “Clearly there are exceptional windfall profits in the oil and gas sector, and clearly there’s a problem in the energy market, and we should fix one with the other,” he told the BBC Radio 4’s Today programme.

In the fallout of astronomical living costs, ministers revealed in May that oil and gas firms would pay an extra 25% on profits made in the UK, known as the Energy Profits Levy. Although, this would not come into play until 14th July, meaning BP would dodge the increase in tax for their second quarter.

Labour has been piling on the pressure, imploring ministers to rethink tax breaks on new fossil fuel extraction and use the money saved to reinvest into struggling households. “People are worried sick about energy prices rising again in the autumn, but yet again we see eye-watering profits for oil and gas producers,” said Labour’s shadow chancellor, Rachel Reeves. 

“Labour argued for months for a windfall tax on these companies to help bring bills down, but when the Tories finally u-turned they decided to hand billions of pounds back to producers in tax breaks. That is totally wrong. It’s clear people need greater protection from rising bills,” she added.

The increased prices for oil and gas have come as a result of the war in Ukraine, with Russia reducing supplies to Europe after the invasion and there are fears all ties could be cut completely. The reduced resources resulted in wholesale prices soaring, leaving consumers to make up for the increase. “It’s clear people need greater protection from rising bills.”

Recently, the government announced they’d be providing support for households by providing a £400 discount for every household in October, which, erm, helps I guess? However, according to Cornwall Insight’s forecast, the energy cap had risen by more than £500 since the funding package was announced.

  • Writer Chris Saunders
  • Banner Image Credit Unsplash

Related Content