WHAT IS FUEL POVERTY?
Broadly speaking a household is defined as being ‘fuel poor’ if they cannot reasonably afford to heat their home.
Technically or politically speaking the definition has varied over the years. It is also a devolved matter so it varies throughout the UK: England, Wales, Scotland & Northern Ireland all have their own definitions, measuring and strategies to tackle fuel poverty.
There are three main contributors to fuel poverty: low income, high fuel costs and inefficient homes (see diagram below).
Fuel poverty rates:
Excess Winter Deaths:
EWDs are the difference between the average daily deaths in the winter months (December to March) compared to the rest of the year.
The following figures are for England & Wales EWDs:
|England & Wales EWD’s||Portsmouth EWD’s|
2019 to 2020
|28,300||Not published yet|
|2018 to 2019||23,200||
|2017 to 2018||50,100||
Causes of Excess Winter Deaths:
The top three causes of EWD’s are: respiratory conditions, circulatory conditions and dementia and Alzheimer’s disease (see diagram below). Many of the causes can be linked to living in cold homes: ‘Cold homes can affect or exacerbate a range of health problems including respiratory
problems, circulatory problems and increased risk of poor mental health’ (Public Health England).