92% of UK offshore oil rig workers support the ‘nationalisation’ of energy companies to achieve a fairer and more efficient transition, according to a survey funded by unions and NGOs.

Respondents are also 94% in favor of a “permanent windfall tax” on the industry, according to this survey released today. The survey was conducted among more than 1,000 offshore workers in England and Scotland, notably by platform NGO Friends of the Earth, as well as major UK unions such as RMT, GMB, Unite.

These workers also favor the creation of a state fund to finance the energy transition, like Norway’s, and help to transition to jobs in the renewable energy sector.

According to the results of this research, published in a report entitled ‘Our Power’, polluting companies should also fund the dismantling of old oil platforms for fields that are no longer active in the North Sea, including of hydrocarbon resources that will eventually be exhausted.

“Corporate greed and government inaction are translating into ballooning bills, worsening working conditions and no plan for a just transition,” laments Gabriel Yeliazkov of Friends of the Earth.

Respondents also complain about hourly wages that can drop to £5 an hour while working 12 hours a day, 7 days a week, the survey found.

An Energy Department spokesman responded by saying “the government’s plan to decarbonise the oil and gas sector is absolutely fair and we strongly deny any allegations to the contrary”.

The RMT, GMB and Unite unions are planning strike action in the coming weeks to demand better working conditions.

Four of the big five (Shell, Chevron, ExxonMobil, TotalEnergies) broke their net profit records in 2022, while BP posted record earnings excluding exceptionals.

In total, they made $151 billion in net profits last year.

Inflation is running at 10% in the UK and the ‘Our Power’ study reports workers who, although employed by energy companies, struggle to pay their own electricity and gas bills.

Britain’s BP also recently said it would slow its energy transition targets and step up its investments in hydrocarbons alongside those in renewables.