Energy summit announced as 36% of Scotland approaches fuel poverty

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has confirmed an urgent need to convene suppliers and consumer bodies to discuss assistance amid spiralling bills. 

A Scottish energy summit will be held imminently, with the country’s major suppliers – including Scottish Power, OVO Energy, Centrica, Octopus, and E.ON – alongside industry bodies, consumer and poverty organisations all set to attend. 

black roof under white clouds

Led by First Minister Nicola Sturgeon, the summit will focus on considerations as to what collective action can be taken by government, private companies, and the third sector to help businesses and consumers access advice and get support to help with debt. The announcement comes as figures point to 36% of Scottish residents being at risk of falling into fuel poverty by October, follows a meeting of the Scottish Government’s Resilience Committee about the cost of living crisis, and precedes the forthcoming OfGem announcement of a new energy price cap, due 26th August.

‘There is a not a single solution to this problem and government, industry and the third sector in Scotland needs to work collaboratively together to ensure the right support is in place for householders and businesses during this challenging winter. This could include improving the availability of help and advice and considering a more compassionate approach to debt management,’ Sturgeon said.

‘However, it remains the case that the powers and resources needed to tackle this emergency on the scale required – access to borrowing, welfare, VAT on fuel, taxation of windfall profits, regulation of the energy market – lie with the UK Government. Only the UK Government can access and make available resources on the scale required. They need to take action, now,’ she continued. ‘As I said last week, a first step would be to cancel the energy price cap rise this autumn.’

Earlier this month, Friend’s of the Earth Scotland labelled the energy system ‘broken’ as BP, one of the world’s seven biggest oil and gas suppliers, announced its second-highest quarterly profit of all time, at £6.9bn – triple the figure for the same period in 2021, taking half-year profits to £11.9bn. The company has promised to increase shareholder payouts by 10% and buy back shares from investors to further boost their value.  

Image credit: Nadine Marfurt



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