Labour and Sir Keir Starmer have accepted £380,000 from a wealthy donor who has also been funding Just Stop Oil and Extinction Rebellion (XR) activists, it has emerged.
Ecotricity founder Dale Vince has given £360,000 to the party and £20,000 to Sir Keir since the last election, according to Sky News and Tortoise media’s Westminster Accounts investigation.
Mr Vince also said he has given “tens of thousands” to Just Stop Oil – the activist group condemned by the Labour leader as “wrong and arrogant” for staging disruptive protests which halted traffic.
“People like Extinction Rebellion – I gave them some money. And Just Stop Oil, same thing. I gave them tens of thousands, probably,” the donor told Sky News.
Mr Vince added: “We’ve reached the point when taking to the streets is all we’ve got. Most people have no power to change what’s happening. The direction of travel [on climate change] is a disastrous one, so I understand why those organisations do the things they do.”
Sir Keir has criticised the Just Stop Oil protesters who blocked traffic by gluing themselves to roads. “I think they’re wrong. It’s absolutely arrogant … to think they’re the only people who have got the answer.”
Mr Vince said he had disagreed with some tactics used by Just Stop Oil. “When they were smashing bank windows I did say publicly I didn’t think it was the right thing to do.”
The founder of the leading renewable energy company said he had donated to Labour “to help them win … so they have the chance to deliver their agenda, which is my agenda – social justice and a green economy”.
It has emerged that the Labour leader has received the highest amount in personal donations of any MPs since the last election – taking in just over £752,000.
Rishi Sunak was second on the list, receiving just over £546,000, narrowly ahead of former Tory PM Liz Truss with £537,000 and Labour’s shadow chancellor Rachel Reeves with £441,000.
The new database of shows that 14 MPs have received more than £250,000 towards their campaigns, causes and staffing costs since the 2019 general election.
Amid concerns over where money flowing into Westminster is coming from, it also emerged that MPs have declared almost £5m in outside earnings without disclosing their end clients since 2019.
Almost 50 MPs declared earnings from intermediaries such as consultancies and speaking agencies without explaining who ultimately paid for their work.
Daniel Greenberg, who is taking over from Kathryn Stone as parliamentary standards commissioner, said the use of intermediaries did not meet the level of transparency he was looking for.
“Clearly, registering a third party through whom significant services were provided to a particular client without registering the relationship with that client would not satisfy the requirement of transparency at which the registration system is aimed,” he said.
Mr Sunak and Sir Keir have both said the welcomed greater transparency over donations and earning. The PM said on Monday that MPs will have to “justify” their donations their constituents.
Sir Keir has said he wanted to see “stricter” rules to restrict second jobs. Labour previously said it wanted to ban second jobs with only “limited exemptions”, but Starmer suggested that his party would have to work across the Commons to pin down what those exemptions would be.