195,256 research outputs found

    Measuring fuel poverty: general considerations and application to German household data

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    Fuel poverty may become an increasingly severe problem in developed countries in cases when real prices for fossil fuels increase at high rates or when real energy prices increase due to policies for greenhouse gas abatement. Fuel poverty measurement consists of two largely independent parts, firstly, the definition of an adequate fuel poverty line, and secondly, the application of techniques to measure fuel poverty given some poverty line. This paper reviews options for the definition of fuel poverty lines as well as techniques for fuel poverty measurement. Based on household data from Germany, figures that would result from different fuel poverty lines are derived. Different fuel poverty lines partly yield highly different results with respect to which households are identified as fuel poor. Thus, the choice of the fuel poverty line matters decisively for the resulting fuel poverty assessment. Options for fuel poverty measurement and subgroup comparison in order to identify most vulnerable types of households are discussed in the light of the literature and based on applications to German household data

    Fuel poverty, older people and cold weather: An all-island analysis

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    Executive Summary This report covers a number of different aspects of fuel poverty and older people. 1. An exploration of existing government survey data from Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland with a particular focus on older people and conducting additional targeted analyses where required. 2. An original survey in the Republic of Ireland exploring the lived experience of older people in cold weather. 3. A feasibility study of data logging thermometers placed in the homes of older tenants in local authority accommodation. 4. Analysis of excess winter mortality among older people including a consideration of differences between the two jurisdictions. Older people on the island of Ireland, as in many other countries, experience a ‘dual burden’ in terms of fuel poverty. They are more likely to experience fuel poverty and are also particularly vulnerable to health and social harm as a result of this experience. The numbers of older people vulnerable to ill-effects from cold homes will rise as numbers of people aged 80 and over, and those living with chronic illness or disability, increase. There were significant differences observed between expenditure-based, and subjective (EU-SILC) based fuel poverty indicators, for older people, and between Northern Ireland and Republic of Ireland data. This data required careful interpretation. The higher levels of fuel poverty recorded for older people on the island of Ireland appeared to be driven by all aspects of the fuel poverty model - poor housing condition, energy inefficient housing, rising fuel prices and low income. The majority of older people live in their own home and these homes tend to be older properties which are detached or semi-detached. Older people on the island are over-represented among houses which are in poor condition and which lack central heating in both jurisdictions. Lacking central heating was a more common experience for older people in the Republic of Ireland than in Northern Ireland. Data on energy efficiency measures were not comparable North/South but similar patterns were observed. Older people were less likely than the general population to have attic/loft or wall insulation or double glazing. Older people were also vulnerable from an income point of view. This would seem to be a particular issue in Northern Ireland where rates of income poverty are significantly increasing. In both jurisdictions older people were heavily reliant on social transfers to keep them out of poverty. Coupled with this, there is evidence that many older people are not claiming their full entitlements. Oil dependency was a particular issue in Northern Ireland. Very significant increases were observed in the price of heating oil, as well as electricity and gas in recent years. There was little available research evidence on the relationship between the older consumer and heating oil suppliers

    Energy Poverty in Buffalo\u27s West Side: PUSH, National Fuel, and the Fight for Equitable Energy Access

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    Energy poverty, the condition of households that cannot adequately heat their homes, is a chronic problem resulting from low income, high fuel prices, and poorly insulated, energy inefficient houses. In addition to financial strain, energy poverty causes severe social and health problems for people living in under-heated homes (Boardman 1991; 2013). Despite its seriousness and pervasiveness, energy poverty has been ignored too often in the US. Those that suffer through energy poverty each year, trapped in bitterly cold homes and facing exorbitant fuel bills, have only rarely organized effectively to demand necessary changes, making the case of People United for Sustainable Housing (PUSH) so significant. Through community organizing, advocacy, and protest, PUSH catalyzed unprecedented shifts in the distribution of energy conservation funding in Western New York, ensuring that a greater share went toward low-income households for weatherization

    Fuel Poverty: Evidence from housing perspective

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    The literature has traditionally approached fuel poverty as a result of poverty. Fuel poor are those households who cannot pay fuel bill and have to live in cold ambient, with grave effects on their health. As fuel poverty is actually considered in poverty’s analysis, there is little discussion about whether homeowners (who own housing wealth and, theoretically, cannot be poor) could suffer this problem. This paper assesses fuel poverty amongst Spanish households. It deeps on how poverty situations triggers fuel poverty in the context of housing and discusses whether or not housing tenure causes fuel poverty due to housing characteristics, those usually evaluated as poverty component. The paper finds empirical evidence about the relevance of tenancy when it comes to explain the likelihood of falling under the poverty line as well as about the fact that fuel poverty has become a systematic situation in all poor Spanish households regardless of their tenant status. Using micro-data obtained from the Quality of Life Survey (EU-SILC) for Spain, the data are segmented by residential tenure and household type, calculating poverty lines for homeowners, renters (both at market prices and below them), and free-rent housing ‒the four tenure formulas existing in the Spanish housing market‒ and including two variables to capture fuel poverty situations. A logistic regression model is applied and results suggest that fuel poverty clearly appears as an expression of poverty at any tenancy type

    Climate change and fuel poverty

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    The research examined the possible effects of rapid climate change on fuel poverty (needing to spend more than 10% of income to maintain a satisfactory level of warmth and other energy services in the home). One particular concern was the prospect that there might be a shutting off of the Gulf Stream, which warms Britain and the rest of north-western Europe. Computer simulations of the climate indicate that shutting down the Gulf Stream would cool England by about 3°C. Climate is not the only variable that will affect future levels of fuel poverty. The other main ones are what will happen to the energy efficiency of the building stock, to incomes and to energy prices. The aim of the project was to examine what might happen to each of these four dimensions and construct three scenarios in each dimension (most likely, high and low) to capture the range of variation in possible outcomes. A total of 81 (3x3x3x3) scenarios were modelled and analysed. Since any changes in the climate system take decadesto play out, but it is extremely difficult to predict social, economic and technological changes even 25 years in the future, it was decided to set an objective for this research of looking forward to 2030.

    The 100 day challenge: a literature review of the factors associated with tackling fuel poverty in the UK

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    Fuel poverty is a complex issue arising from a simple problem: the inability to afford to sufficiently heat one’s home. The Government has pledged that all vulnerable households should be removed from fuel poverty by 2010, with longer-term aims that no households in England should live in fuel poverty by 2016 and that, by 2018, fuel poverty should be completely eradicated throughout the UK . This report comprises a review of the available literature on the major issues associated with fuel poverty in the UK, with particular reference to the efficacy of staple methods used to treat fuel-poor households

    Measuring fuel poverty in France: which households are the most vulnerable?

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    Fuel poverty is a growing concern in France. Following the hike in energy prices that started in 2004, the problem of energy affordability for low-income households entered the political debate with the “Grenelle de l’environnement” in 2007. According to the standard UK definition (10% ratio) 3.4 million households were subject to fuel poverty in France in 2006. We question the way fuel poverty is currently measured and compare the impact of alternative measurement approaches on the extent and composition of fuel poverty in France. Then, we identify and characterize vulnerable households that are not ordinarily poor, but can be pushed into poverty because of their fuel bills. The incidence, depth and severity of poverty is measured with the Foster, Greer and Thorbecke indicator. Furthermore, econometric models are used to analyze which factors influence the probability of vulnerable households to fall into poverty. The study indicates that the proportion of fuel poor people and their characteristics differ significantly depending on the fuel poverty measure chosen. The econometric results show that the probability of falling into poverty is higher for those who are retired living alone, rent their home, use an individual boiler for heating, and cook with butane or propane

    Occupant behaviour as a fourth driver of fuel poverty (aka warmth & energy deprivation)

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    A conceptual framework for occupant behaviour as a driver of fuel poverty is presented, comprising: housing and use of the home; heating and energy arrangements and thermal comfort; household structure and dynamics; health and well-being; household finances; and social activity and relations. This framework informs longitudinal analysis of movements into and out of fuel poverty among households in deprived communities in Glasgow. Household surveys across ten years yielded a longitudinal sample of 3297 cases where initial and subsequent fuel poverty status was recorded using an experiential measure. A third of households changed their fuel poverty status over time: 18% moving out of fuel poverty and 16% moving in. Factors strongly associated with movements into fuel poverty included: being a single parent (OR 2.27); experiencing a mental health problem (OR 2.74); and remaining out of work (OR 1.89). Movement out of fuel poverty was less likely among those with infrequent family contact (OR 0.55) and who moved home (OR 0.66); home improvements had no effect upon the experience of fuel poverty. It is argued that the policy problem should be considered one of ‘warmth and energy deprivation’, accompanied by a broader interpretation of vulnerability to as well as from fuel poverty