European ‘knowledge hub’ to tackle fuel poverty

A consortium of 13 European organisations plans to form a ‘knowledge hub’ to tackle fuel poverty. The European Energy Poverty Observatory (EPOV), which includes a number of universities, think-tanks and businesses, […]

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By Jonny Bairstow

A consortium of 13 European organisations plans to form a ‘knowledge hub’ to tackle fuel poverty.

The European Energy Poverty Observatory (EPOV), which includes a number of universities, think-tanks and businesses, aims to increase awareness of fuel poverty and help implement innovative policies and practices to address the issue.

The project will be funded by the EU and co-ordinated by Dr Harriet Thomson and Professor Stefan Bouzarovski from the University of Manchester. It will also involve an advisory board of more than 50 leading stakeholders from various sectors.

Fuel poverty affects more than 50 million households in Europe – these people struggle to pay their bills on time, are unable to combat damp and mould and can’t achieve adequate levels of heating, cooling and lighting in their homes.

Dr Thomson said: “It’s widely agreed that fuel poverty across Europe is due to high energy prices, low household incomes, inefficient buildings and appliances and specific household energy needs.

“The EU Observatory will not only help people to access information on the extent of fuel poverty across European Member States – it will also make available information on measures to combat it. There will be comprehensive, innovative and evidence based practice and policy frameworks.”

The consortium members include the University of Manchester, the European Policy Centre, National Energy Action, the EU Fuel Poverty Network and Housing Euro.

An Ofgem boss was awarded a £15,000 pay rise on fuel poverty day.