LAST year, the oil company BP made more money in two minutes than a middling British family makes in a year.

The company made £9.5 billion profit in 2021 - that’s £18,000 per minute. 

At the same time, the latest figures show that BP paid no tax on its North Sea oil and gas business.

Instead the UK treasury paid BP a subsidy of £35 million! 

A system of generous tax breaks means that BP has paid no tax on its North Sea business.  

These revelations came from climate campaign group Uplift.  

They’ve done great work uncovering the generous tax arrangements given to oil giants like BP.  

These companies are making bumper profits and receiving subsidies from  the government, would you believe? 

Yet families are struggling to keep the lights on.

Somerset County Gazette: CAMPAIGN: Alan DebenhamCAMPAIGN: Alan Debenham

My Green Party has joined Uplift, and other campaigners, in calling for a windfall tax on the big oil companies.

This would help fund proper support for families struggling with higher energy bills.

During the pandemic, some companies and wealthy individuals have done very well financially.  

At the same time, many families have struggled and had to confront the ‘heating or eating’ dilemma..

Oxfam, in which I  campaign, recently revealed that the world’s ten richest saw their wealth double over the last two years.

Last year found six companies shared excess profits of £16 billion during the pandemic.

We called for a Pandemic Profits Tax to help pay for the recovery from Covid: sadly, to Tory Party deaf ears.

It’s clear to everyone that a new approach to tax is needed and how we support people.

Read more: 'Climate change demands lifestyle change' says Alan Debenham 

Among those hardest hit by the cost of living squeeze are carers, the disabled and people who have lost their jobs.

How can that be right?

A new plan, written by people with experience in benefits and welfare system, sets out how to deal with entrenched poverty. 

This “Commission on Social Security” (look it up please) proposed a guaranteed decent income for all and a welfare system that has dignity at its heart.

The exact ambitions and system which I support and  hope thousands of other local people do too.

Surely, the coming new ‘Somerset Unitary’ and ‘Taunton Town’ historic elections, plus  Parish elections, on May 5, should be our big voting extravaganza  to put things straight?

Yours in  removing  the indefensible,

Alan Debenham