Mal O’Hara said “Light on detail, bringing back fracking, protecting the profits of big energy and failing to support the most vulnerable are the key headlines from what the new Tory Prime Minister has said today.

While much of the costing and detail will come next week with a fiscal statement from the new Chancellor, what we have heard today will give little comfort to the most vulnerable. To bring back fracking in the face of a climate emergency is a gross dereliction of duty for coming generations.

For Northern Ireland, we are a separate energy market and there is scant detail on how these proposals will apply here. We have already seen the unseemly debacle a few weeks ago when our local Economy and Finance Ministers disagreed on when the proposed £400 to all households will reach Northern Ireland while this will come into effect in the rest of the UK in October.”

Councillor O’Hara continued “What we need in Northern Ireland is to immediately have a returned Executive which can implement measures to protect the most vulnerable. The DUP must end their blockade while increasing numbers of people are choosing between heating and eating.

Local government can restore the universal credit uplift, ramp up the transition to renewable community owned energy, bring in support for small businesses, the public and third sectors and get payments out to households in need.”