By Jon Trickett MP
On Monday evening I will be taking part in the latest Socialist Campaign Group policy event organised with the Labour Assembly Against Austerity and Momentum.
This discussion on Progressive Solutions to the Energy Crisis couldn’t come at a more crucial time.
Energy bills are soaring through the roof. Many families are having to choose between heating or eating.
On our current trajectory we are expected to fail to meet our carbon reduction targets to keep global warming below 1.5 degrees.
Meanwhile the UK’s Big Six energy companies raked in more than a billion pounds of profit ahead of their record hike in household bills this month.
Our energy system is failing our people and our planet. How did we end up here? And what can we do about it?
There are alternatives to the failed privatised model of energy provision. At the 2017 and 2019 General Election, the Labour Party proudly supported public ownership and a Green Industrial Revolution to restructure our economy in the interests of working people and take the measures necessary to prevent climate breakdown.
Labour must not step back from these commitments. As more years pass by with the Conservatives tinkering around the edges, the need to transform our energy system becomes even more urgent. We cannot rely on multinational companies seeking nothing but profits to take the necessary action required.
Despite setbacks within the Labour Party, the left is still the only force in UK politics with the vision and ideas to address the crises we face, from the cost of living to climate change.
As the next election draws closer it’s time for us to step up our campaign for policies such as the public ownership of energy that was backed by delegates at the Labour Party Conference in September.
According to polling, 55% of voters back public ownership of energy, while just 8% are opposed. And 55% of Conservative Party voters support the public ownership of energy too. There is a national consensus in support of this policy.
Keir Starmer himself was elected leader of the Labour Party after pledging his support for public ownership of energy. However, he now says he is “not in favour of nationalisation.”
It would be a huge mistake for the leadership to set themselves against the Labour Party membership, trade unions and voters of all parties by refusing to support public ownership.
This event will provide an opportunity for participants from across the labour and progressive movement to share their ideas for transforming our energy system. I hope you can join me at the event on Monday evening and that we can take the campaign forward in the weeks and months ahead.
You can register here for the event: Progressive Solutions to the Energy Crisis, Monday, 25th April 2022, 7pm.
Speakers include: Jon Trickett – Labour MP for Hemsworth; Cat Hobbs, Director of We Own It – the campaign for public services to be run for people not profit; and Aydin Dikerdem – New Economics Foundation.
Image: Jon Trickett. Source: https://api20170418155059.azure-api.net/photo/g2eLCe7R.jpeg?crop=MCU_3:4&quality=80&download=true. Author: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chris_McAndrew, licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported license.
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