MP COLUMN: The Government needs to act now over energy crisis

There’s a growing cost of living crisis affecting households across our area.

By Alan Campbell, Tynemouth MP
Friday, 14th January 2022, 5:00 am
Alan Campbell, Tynemouth MP.
Alan Campbell, Tynemouth MP.

At the core are rising energy costs, due to increase further in the next few weeks.

But there is also real concern about the rising cost of food and petrol.

That’s why the Opposition sought this week to force the Government to act and ease the pressure on families.

We put forward a three-part plan for cutting energy costs.

Removing VAT for twelve months, extending the time for companies to pay back Government loans to avoid increasing prices and extending the Warm Homes Discount.

Every household would get at least £200 off their bills with the poorest households including pensioners saving up to £600.

Every household stands to be hit by higher bills and so every household needs help.

The plan is costed and would be paid for from the extra tax receipts from higher fuel prices and from a windfall tax on oil and gas companies who have also made unexpected profits.

There is a global gas price crisis, but the Government has been too slow to act.

They have failed to invest in new green and nuclear energy leaving the country over reliant on imported gas and they closed storage facilities which would offer some protection from price fluctuations.

They also failed to regulate the energy market properly.

It’s not just a crisis for domestic consumers it’s a major problem for energy intensive businesses and if costs go up, adding to inflation, then interest rates will follow.

That’s why the Government needs to act now.