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fairinvestment.co.uk: National Energy Action: Shell reaps profit while fuel-poor households ‘suffer’

05/02/2007

Energy efficiency charity National Energy Action (NEA) has called on the government to cut consumer fuel prices as Royal Dutch Shell reported a year of record UK profits, the highest ever recorded by a UK oil company.

The oil conglomerate’s annual profits hit £12.94 billion, representing 21 per cent growth over the last year.

But consumers have meanwhile struggled with “double-digit domestic fuel increases” as average annual domestic fuel bills top £1,000, NEA has estimated.

Expensive fuel bites even harder with the cold weather many are predicting as February, traditionally the coldest month of the year, begins.

“It is hard to absolve [Shell] from responsibility to the community and poor households who are now suffering,” NEA chief executive William Gillis claimed.

When high fuel prices are “passed on to the most vulnerable”, fuel poverty is the result, he said.

Fuel poverty, which denotes the inability to heat your home to an adequate level, currently affects three million people across the UK according to NEA statistics – despite a government commitment to eliminate fuel poverty altogether by 2010.

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