Keir Starmer demands freeze on energy cap in new Labour plans – follow live

Keir Starmer demands freeze on energy cap in new Labour plans – follow live
The Labour leader said its plan will be laid out in the coming days

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Energy cost saving tips for households preparing for winter

Keir Starmer will on Monday call for the energy price cap to be frozen at its current level of £1,971 as UK households struggle to pay their bills in the worst cost of living crisis in decades.

The move to block an expected increase to £3,300 in October is expected to put further pressure on the two Tory leadership contenders.

A think tank has warned households on low incomes will have to reduce their spending power by three times as much as high-income households in order to afford their energy bills this winter.

“We would end the injustice that sees people on prepayment meters paying over the odds for their energy,” Labour leader Keir Starmer wrote in The Sunday Mirror.

It comes after Sir Keir on Friday said it is “nonsense” to claim his party has not been leading on the cost-of-living crisis.

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Rishi Sunak vows to make UK ‘energy independent,’ if made PM

Rishi Sunak has set out plans to make Britain “energy secure” – including boosting North Sea gas production – as he seeks to make up ground in the Tory leadership race.

The former chancellor said he would legislate to make the UK “energy independent” by 2045 at the latest as he vowed to ensure there is no repeat of the looming winter crisis.

Mr Sunak confirmed that if he becomes prime minister on 5 September, he would put in place immediate support for households – particularly the most vulnerable – faced with soaring energy bills.

At the same time he pledged urgent action to drive up domestic energy supply with the creation of a new energy security task force and deregulation in the North Sea to allow gas production to increase over the winter.

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Climate Big Picture

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Sir Ed Davey suggests Labour stole energy price cap plan

Liberal Democrats leader Sir Ed Davey has suggested Labour took its plan to freeze the energy price after Sir Keir Starmer unveiled his Party’s plan to ban the increase of energy bills amid falling living standards in the UK.

Writing on Twitter following the announced plan, Mr Davey said: “Hi UK Labour glad you liked my proposal to cancel the energy price rise. I also have some thoughts on electoral reform that you’re welcome to adopt…”

Earlier this week, the Lib Dems called on October’s expected energy price cap rise to be scrapped, with the cost covered by a windfall tax on energy company profits.

The Energy Price Cap Increase (Cancellation) Bill would make Ofgem maintain the existing rates, saving households an average of £1,400 this year, the Lib Dems said.

The bill would also make the government produce a report into extending and backdating the windfall tax on oil and gas company profits to help cover the cost.

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Rishi Sunak accused of breaking climate vow with new plan to drill more oil and gas

Rishi Sunak has been accused of undermining the government’s climate policy as he vowed to boost the production of oil and gas in the North Sea through a new deregulation drive.

The Tory leadership contender has set out plans to extract more domestic fossil fuels, claiming that he will order a new licensing round for oil and gas drilling permits “immediately” – with a further round from 2024 – if he becomes PM.

But climate campaigners told The Independent that his proposals are “utterly bewildering”. They argued that the proposals do nothing to help cut soaring energy bills, and put Mr Sunak’s commitment to the legal target of cutting emissions to zero by 2050 in doubt.

Read the full story below:

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UK power sector to ‘wargame’ energy rationing amid threat of days-long blackouts

Gas power stations could be shut off to ration energy supplies as part of emergency plans to stave off widespread blackouts this winter, insiders have warned.

Sources at two power stations, along with government officials, said they were preparing to “wargame” emergency plans next month, and that they had been asked to review measures to keep Britain’s lights on in the worst-case scenario of dangerously low supplies.

They suggested that drills could take place in September and October, and warned that they could be asked to switch gas stations off in order to ease high network demand.

Read more here

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Labour calls for ban on energy price rise

Sir Keir Starmer will demand that the energy price cap is kept at the current level of £1,971, saving consumers thousands of pounds in future spiralling costs.

The Labour leader is expected to unveil the plan on Monday in a bid to prevent the regulator Ofgem from hiking the price to the anticipated £3,600 in October, The Guardian reported.

It comes amid reports that the Treasury has drawn up a multi-million pound package to help households with their rising energy bills. Under plans previewed in The Sunday Times, the chancellor Nadhim Zahawi is considering cutting the energy price cap by an extra £400.

Read the full story below:

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Welcome

Good morning and welcome to The Independent’s politics blog. Follow along for the latest updates from Westminster and the cost of living crisis.

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