Energy: EU: electricity and gas despite unpaid bills

EU: electricity and gas despite unpaid bills

In view of the energy crisis, the EU Parliament is calling for consumers to be supported and not to be bullied even if they have unpaid bills

In view of the energy crisis, the EU Parliament is calling for consumers to be supported and not to be disconnected from electricity and gas, even if they have unpaid bills. photo

© Frank Rumpenhorst/dpa

The European parliamentarians want to support private households in the energy crisis: Nobody should be cold or end up on the street because of unpaid bills.

Anyone who can no longer pay their energy bills can, according to the European Parliament nevertheless not be disconnected from the supply. Forced evictions from homes of low-income households that cannot pay their energy bills and rent must be prevented. This emerges from a resolution of the parliament, which was adopted on Wednesday.

However, a decision on this would have to be made in EU-countries are met. In addition, the parliamentarians reiterated their call for an immediate ban on energy imports from Russia.

Economic Spokesman of the Christian Democratic EPP Group, Markus Ferber, also complained that it was not yet clear how the EU would get more gas. The EU Commission and the Member States should have been working on a large-scale joint gas procurement initiative no later than one day after the Russian invasion of Ukraine. Ferber negotiated the text adopted by the European Parliament.

Excess profit tax also continues to be part of the discussion

The Greens MP Jutta Paulus emphasized: “A common European EU-wide energy purchase and the cap on gas import prices help against distortion of competition.” She also complained that a majority had spoken out in favor of extending the life of coal and nuclear power plants. Her party colleague Michael Bloss would also have preferred a greater focus on the expansion of renewable energies.

On Wednesday, the European left-wing faction had already presented its own demands to combat the energy crisis. Among other things, according to the will of the parliamentary group, an excess profit tax should also be introduced for branches of industry such as arms manufacturers, as the German MP Cornelia Ernst explained.

In the future, energy companies in the EU are to be obliged to hand over part of their crisis profits to the respective state. This is intended to relieve consumers. The EU countries had agreed on this.


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