September 19, 2023
Record breaking profits of energy companies are an insult to hard-pressed businesses and families – Darren O’Rourke TD

Sinn Féin spokesperson for the Environment and Climate Action has criticised the government for creating the conditions whereby energy companies continue to make record-breaking profits while ordinary workers, families and businesses are crippled by sky-high energy bills in the midst of a cost of living crisis.

Commenting on ESB’s half year profits, which rose by 30% to a record breaking €676 million, the Meath-East TD said:

“ESB has today announced profits that are 90% higher than this time last year. In the context of exorbitant energy prices, which remain some of the highest in Europe, it is abundantly clear that this government has created a system that fails to deliver for everyone, and instead favours the profitability of energy companies and the most well off.

“To add insult to injury, this will not translate to a reduction in energy prices due to the fact that its energy and supply businesses are required to operate separately. While I acknowledge that there is little that can be done when it comes to EU competition law, the fact is that wholesale energy prices have been falling globally for some time now yet consumers have still to feel any real benefit. Energy prices remain stubbornly high.

“With Winter fast approaching, many households will struggle to keep the lights on. Others will be forced to choose between heating and heating. That is unacceptable, in particular in a country whose economy is supposedly ‘booming.’ The reality is that only very few are reaping the benefits of economic growth while others are simply left out in the cold.

“The government urgently needs to get to grips with this situation and ensure that our energy market functions for everyone, that it delivers fair and equitable outcomes for ordinary workers, families and businesses rather than favouring large energy companies alone.

“Sinn Féin has proposed a suite of measures that would decisively and effectively reign in the chaos. We are calling on the government to adopt our proposals to take control of this situation. If not, Sinn Féin is ready to deliver the decisive leadership needed to ensure our energy markets function for everyone.”

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