Open letter: North Sea oil and gas won't help our energy bills or the climate

Dear Prime Minister, Chancellor and Business Secretary,

We write to you as a group of individuals and organisations greatly concerned about the government’s response to the energy price crisis facing the UK, sparked by rising gas prices and the war in Ukraine.

While we welcome more focus on green energy in the forthcoming energy supply strategy, the government’s support for increased North Sea oil and gas production is a dangerous distraction from the real issue facing UK families, which is one of affordability not shortage of supply. New North Sea production will do nothing to lower household energy bills, unlike energy efficiency, but will act as a brake on the UK’s ambitions to transition to a more affordable, cleaner, secure energy supply.

This is the moment to secure our energy independence from all fossil fuels, which are driving conflict, human rights atrocities and climate breakdown around the world.  We demand a rapid and just transition to a cleaner, more efficient and affordable energy system for the millions of UK families in fuel poverty and the many more around the world facing the consequences of the climate crisis. 

New oil and gas licensing in the North Sea will neither significantly lower energy bills nor provide energy security for the UK

Millions of families are already experiencing fuel poverty here in the UK and this will worsen  while we continue to rely on destructive fossil fuels and the unstable markets that control them. The government’s Energy Supply Strategy must recognise that: 

We urge you to use this horrific moment of conflict not to lock in our dependence on more oil and gas but to supercharge the UK’s transition to a cleaner, more efficient and affordable energy system. Doing so will reduce energy poverty, create thousands of good, green jobs, and represent a huge leap forward in our commitment to tackling the climate crisis. 

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