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Daily Record
Daily Record
Andrew Quinn

Scots face 'ludicrous' energy bills while BP rakes in 'obscene' £23billion profits

Scottish politicians have slammed BP's record profits as "obscene" after the oil giant announced that it made £23billion last year.

The SNP, Labour, the Scottish Greens and the Lib Dems all called for the UK Government to expand its windfall tax after hearing of the company's huge profits.

BP benefited from increased oil and gas prices caused by the war in Ukraine.

The company also said that it had slashed its emissions reduction targets by a third and that it will produce much more oil and gas by the end of this decade than previously thought.

The announcement comes just days after Shell reported its highest profit on record at nearly £33billion. SNP Energy spokesperson Alan Brown called on the UK Government to further tax the big oil companies.

He said: "There is no question that the Tory government must scrap its downright offensive plan to raise the energy bill price cap yet again in April - and guarantee households will continue to receive the £400 Energy Bill Support Scheme payments. It’s ludicrous that ordinary families are paying through the teeth while major companies are making record profits.

"Instead of increasing people’s bills, the Tories should be reducing them by taxing share buy backs, expanding the windfall tax, and clamping down on non-dom tax status. The Tory cost of living crisis has been a decade in the making - with Brexit, austerity cuts, and Tory incompetence on the economy and energy security hammering household incomes.

“Scotland is an energy rich country - and with independence we can escape Westminster control, strengthen our economy and bring down energy bills permanently.”

Labour's Shadow Scottish Secretary Ian Murray said that the company had made the money at the expense of Scottish working people. Murray said: “The BP profits are yet another example of excess profits on the back of people unable to pay their energy bills.

"Rishi Sunak doesn’t want a proper windfall tax as he doesn’t understand the lives of ordinary people who are struggling. The CEO of BP himself said the energy crisis was a cash machine for his company. They should be putting more into the pot to help people now.”

The Scottish Greens energy and environment spokesperson Mark Ruskell called the profits "obscene" and called for the Conservative Government to shift away from fossil fuels. Ruskell said: “These profits are obscene. They should be seen as a stark warning of where our climate is headed and the urgent need to move on from oil and gas.

“There are few companies who have done as much damage to our environment as BP. Yet, while millions are struggling to pay their bills, they are reporting some of the most biggest profits in their history. All across the world we are seeing the devastating impact of climate change.

"In Chile there are deadly wildfires. But things have never been better for the oil giants. They are laughing their way to the bank while the world is burning around us. We can’t go on like this. We can’t have multi-billion pound companies building excessive fortunes from the destruction of our planet.

“We urgently need to get away from oil and gas and from a system based on maximum extraction and maximum profits. That means action from every government and a major shift to renewable energy. Renewable energy is the cheapest and cleanest energy available. Yet, climate-wrecking governments like the one in Westminster are still prioritising fossil fuels at the cost of our climate.

“We need a fair and just transition that works for our communities and for people and planet. We have the technology and the money, all that is missing is the political will.”

Liberal Democrat Leader Ed Davey said: “Yet another oil giant has been allowed to rake in huge profits from Putin’s illegal invasion of Ukraine, while families choose between eating and heating.

“Rishi Sunak has failed the people of this country by ignoring calls for a proper windfall tax. This Conservative Government need to start putting people first instead of allowing energy bills to rise again this April.

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