‘Government can and must intervene to cut energy costs,’ says Ward

Padraig Conlon 08 Mar 2023

Sinn Féin TD for Dublin Mid-West, Mark Ward, has said he believes that the government can intervene to cut energy costs and the time to do so is now.

Deputy Ward, who was speaking ahead of a Sinn Féin motion on the issue this week, brought forward by the party’s spokespersons on Finance Pearse Doherty and Climate Action Darren O’Rourke, which will be debated in the Dáil.

“The government can and must intervene to cut energy costs and the time to do that is now,” Deputy Ward said.

“Households continue to pay sky-high energy bills – with electricity and gas bills more than double what they were two years ago.

“The government made a conscious decision last month not to provide any meaningful support for households with their energy costs until October.

“This was wrong.

“Households consume as much if not more electricity in the months of April, May and June as they do in October, November and December.

“Yet they will receive no support with these sky-high bills at a time when Saint Vincent de Paul reports that numbers unable to heat their homes more than doubled in 2022.

“It is reprehensible that energy companies are refusing to pass on significant savings made from wholesale electricity price reductions on to households.

“As workers and families continue to suffer, the government facilitated these massive profits with Minister Paschal Donohoe opposing windfall taxes and Minister Eamon Ryan opposing reform of the wholesale electricity market for months.

“They also made a decision not to reduce and cap electricity prices, despite governments all across Europe – in Germany, France, the Netherlands, Austria, Poland, and elsewhere – doing just that.

“The government is yet to implement taxes on energy companies’ windfall profits and still cannot clarify if the windfall profits enjoyed by energy companies for all of 2022 will be capped.

“This is a sensible measure, adopted across Europe, which Sinn Féin Finance spokesperson Pearse Doherty called for in September.

“The government can and must act to cut energy costs now.”


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