Commenting on Ed Miliband’s speech at Battersea Power Station today, and ahead of tomorrow’s Opposition Day Debate on a fuel price freeze, the Green Party MP Caroline Lucas said Labour’s proposals did not go far enough.
Caroline Lucas, the Green MP for Brighton Pavilion, said:
“The Green Party has long campaigned for a cap on rising energy prices and against excessive profits for the Big Six energy companies*. I welcome the fact that Labour has now taken up the cause.
“A temporary price freeze would provide welcome short term relief for people struggling with fuel bills. But with wholesale gas prices likely to remain high and volatile, Labour needs to go far further. To ensure heating costs are affordable in the long term we need a major energy efficiency scheme to super-insulate homes, starting with those of the vulnerable and fuel poor.
“It’s good that Labour acknowledges the scandal of the big energy companies increasing rates and making large profits when millions of homes are in fuel poverty. We’ve long said there should be a price cap, as well as a windfall tax on excessive profits and a public inquiry into the Big Six.”
Commenting on Miliband’s proposals to “strengthen the minimum wage”, Lucas added:
“On a whole range of issues, Labour identify a problem but propose half-hearted solutions. We need to do more than just ‘look at’ the case for a higher minimum wage, or introduce tax breaks to encourage big business to pay a living wage. That’s why the Green Party is committed to raising the minimum wage to 60% of net national average earnings.”