Energy companies are making a killing

Shell, £8.2 billion. BP, £7.1 billion. These two energy companies made more than £15 billion in combined profit between July and September this year.

In the last 12 months, their profits have doubled – and so have our energy bills. This is what’s fuelling the “cost of living crisis”: we pay, they profit.

It’s a crisis of unchecked profiteering and greed.

Tuesday 1 November 2022

A price/profit spiral

This time last year, BP boss Bernard Looney said his company was like a “cash machine”.

BP’s profits had soared from £63 million in the third quarter of 2020 to £2.4 billion in 2021. This year, their profits almost tripled to £7.1 billion – so they’re making more than £2 billion in profit a month.

And Shell’s profits almost doubled to over £8 billion, with the fossil fuel giant recording their second highest ever quarterly profits. And they didn’t pay any windfall tax on these excessive profits. This isn't an accident. The current windfall tax was purposefully designed – by Rishi Sunak – to allow this to happen.

The price of extracting fossil fuels – how much it costs these companies to get oil and gas out of the earth – hasn’t risen during this crisis. So, it’s pure profit they’re making.

We won’t pay for their profits

We don’t have a choice over the prices we’re made to pay to heat and light our homes. We can't individually bargain with BP and Shell over how much they charge for energy. Instead, we’re made to choose between suppliers (British Gas, E.ON, Scottish Power and so on) which buy energy from these fossil fuel giants and sell it on to us at extortionate prices.

Every step of the way, we pay and they all profit.

These energy companies could be made to solve this crisis in its entirety. But Rishi Sunak’s government – just like Boris Johnson's and Liz Truss's governments – won’t step in to force them by taxing their obscene profits.

We have to come together to say we won’t pay for their profits and build the energy bills strike. It’s the only language they understand. This is why Don’t Pay is calling for a mass energy bills strike from 1 December.

1 December, we strike

Don’t Pay isn’t some financial or debt advice to help individuals avoid extortionate energy prices. It’s a campaign to collectively force the government and energy companies to come to the table, end the profiteering and make sure no one goes cold or hungry this winter.

It’s worked once already. Now, we need EVERYONE to spread the strike and fight back together this winter.