Drivers demand windfall tax as petrol and diesel costs rise ‘Boris and Rishi must wake up’

Just Stop Oil activists vandalise a Cobham petrol station

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After BP and Shell both posted record quarterly profits, motorists have called on the Government to implement a windfall tax to ease pressure on drivers. Boris Johnson has resisted calls to introduce a windfall tax so far, saying that it may deter oil and gas producers from investing into domestic energy.

According to a new survey, more than 70 percent of petrol and diesel drivers believe a windfall tax should be introduced on oil corporations.

A further 84.1 percent of those who mainly cycle or walk also said a levy should be brought in to help lower prices.

In addition, almost eight in 10 drivers have not seen fuel prices drop in relation to Chancellor Rishi Sunak’s fuel duty cut announced during his Spring Statement in March.

Commenting on the data, Howard Cox, founder of the FairFuelUK Campaign, called on the Government to implement a windfall tax to protect British drivers from near record fuel prices.

He added: “With pump prices 20p per litre higher than necessary, and BP today declaring soaring underlying profits, it goes against every ounce of my free-market soul to call for a windfall tax. 

“But BP’s oil and gas profits are a grotesque insult to those crippled by the cost of living crisis.

“Thousands of FairFuelUK supporters are struggling with the price of filling up their tanks and paying for their home energy bills.

“Meanwhile fuel supply chain businesses driven by such big oil corporations are wallowing in a lucky cash bonanza that will no doubt be passed onto shareholders who never have to ever worry about putting meals on their tables. 

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“Boris and Rishi must wake up to the cost of living crisis and implement an oil corporation windfall tax. 

“Plus as a matter of urgency also introduce FairFuelUK APPG’s long called for and much needed pump pricing watchdog, PumpWatch.”

The survey also shows that rural drivers had a stronger demand for a windfall tax to be introduced, given the impact of fuel prices.

In most rural areas, petrol and diesel prices will be higher, meaning many rural drivers either need to pay higher costs or drive further into more populated areas to fill up.

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Campaigners have called for a one-off levy on companies benefitting from soaring oil and gas prices to fund initiatives to reduce rising bills.

According to the latest data from the RAC Foundation, both petrol and diesel prices remain high with drivers paying an average of 163.55p per litre for unleaded and 178.29p for a litre of diesel.

Both of these prices have slowly started the increase since April, despite RAC Fuel Watch stating that fuel prices “should fall”.

Steve Crolius, President of Carbon Neutral Consulting and climate advisor to former US President Bill Clinton, said a windfall tax could make a real difference in the UK.

He says: “A tax on the windfall profits of energy companies could accelerate the energy transition. 

“Many of the elements of a climate-sustaining energy economy will need governmental support to mature to the point where they are economically viable.

“At this stage, it can be argued, in fact, that insufficient governmental support is delaying the transition.

“Windfall taxes, therefore, can give governments the chance to boost their investments at a critical time.”

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