The UK’s biggest energy companies made over £3billion in profit in 2020, a sum nearly as big as the council tax rebate offered by chancellor Rishi Sunak to fight soaring bills.
Known as the “Big Six”, the companies including EDF Energy, E.ON UK, and British Gas’s parent company Centrica, recorded profits of £3.06billion, according to their most recent accounts.
Sunak’s £9billion package in response to the energy price cap rising by over 50 per cent includes £5.5billion in repayable energy bill discounts and a £3.6billion council tax discount targeted at those living in lower-value properties.
Miriam Brett, director of research and advocacy at Common Wealth, told the Big Issue the profits highlighted the need for a publicly-owned energy system.
“With all households facing an eye-watering rise in their energy bills, a windfall on the profits of the energy companies can give people immediate relief,” she said. “But the long term solution is public ownership to deliver a clean, secure, energy system.”
A Big Issue analysis of the most recent Companies House accounts available for the firms – E.on UK, SSE, EDF Energy, Scottish Power, and Centrica – found their profits totalled nearly £100 per second.