Are Big Oil Companies Making Too Much Money? BP’s Recent Profits Show Why We Need A Windfall Tax
Do you ever feel like you’re the only one not getting a piece of the pie? That’s how many people are feeling right now, after BP announced its annual profits more than doubled to $28bn (£23bn) in 2022. This huge increase in profits is linked to the Ukraine war and a sharp increase in gas prices, and it’s leaving many people feeling like they’re being taken advantage of.
It’s no wonder that campaigners are angry at BP’s decision to cut its emissions pledge and plan a greater production of oil and gas over the next seven years compared with previous targets. To make matters worse, BP is handing back more than $14bn to shareholders in 2022 – $4.4bn in dividends and $10bn in share buybacks.
The Labour party has asked for Britain’s energy profits levy to be revamped to capture more of the exceptional earnings made by oil and gas firms, but so far, the government has refused to act. This has led to renewed calls for a toughened windfall tax, as oil companies reap rewards from higher gas prices while many households and businesses struggle to cope with a sharp rise in energy bills.
BP’s chief executive, Bernard Looney, has even admitted the levy would not prevent it making any planned investments. This means that BP is essentially laughing all the way to the bank, while millions of people struggle to heat their homes and put food on the table.
It’s clear that something needs to change. We need a government on the side of working people – not fat cat energy producers. We need a windfall tax that will make oil and gas companies pay their fair share, and help those who are struggling with the rising costs of energy. It’s time for our government to take action and make sure that everyone, not just the big oil companies, can benefit from the energy market.