Statement on energy poverty from NGOs welcomed by PBP

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People Before Profit Galway have expressed support for a statement on energy poverty and climate pollution from Irish NGOs.

The party’s representative in Galway Adrian Curran said that NGOs are calling for a ban on disconnections, a windfall tax on energy companies, doubling of the Fuel Allowance, and increase rates of all core social welfare payments by at least €20 per week.

Curran said that the issues around poverty, fuel poverty, and climate change are not unrelated to each other.

“The climate emergency will impact lower income households first and much more than wealthier ones,” he said.

“That said, the best impact we can have in meeting our carbon reduction targets and improving living conditions is by doing things that benefit both. This includes retrofitting all homes to a high standard, beginning with social housing.

“It means introducing free and frequent public transport, something that could be funded for a year in all of the State for the same proposed cost as the N6 bypass. The money is there for these solutions, it’s just not used properly.”

Mr Curran said that we are witnessing a solidarity between multiple groups and classes of people, as everyone faces difficulties affording their bills lately.

“This kind of momentum, such as what we are seeing with the Cost of Living Coalition, needs to continue and build to put pressure on the government to stop the greed of profiteering energy companies and take real action on the cost of living.”