Fuel poverty is a term used to describe a household that is unable to pay the energy bills for its home. This term refers in particular to the bill related to the heating of the dwelling. Despite this first definition, fuel poverty is quite complex to define in an objective way. Thus, a household living in the United Kingdom is concerned by the phenomenon of fuel poverty when it spends more than 10% of the household budget.
WHAT IS FUEL POVERTY?
Fuel poverty, fuel poverty or fuel poverty are terms that refer to the same phenomenon. Apart from Great Britain, which has precisely defined the concept, this phenomenon is rarely defined in a precise and scientific manner. Even at the European level, the term has no official common definition. However, the European Union has a direct influence on the predominant factors of this concept.
Even if the definition is lacking to determine this reality, it can be said that a certain number of common specificities stand out from fuel poverty. Generally speaking, a household is in a situation of fuel poverty when it has difficulty paying its energy bills. People in this type of situation have difficulty meeting their basic needs. In 2017, there were approximately 3.3 million French households affected by this difficulty. The situation is mainly due to low household income and poor insulation of the home.
HOW TO EVALUATE FUEL POVERTY?
According to the Grenelle II of July 12, 2010, a person is in a situation of energy insecurity when he/she feels difficulties to benefit from a sufficient energy supply to satisfy the basic needs of the dwelling. This problem may be due to the inadequacy of resources or the specificities of the dwelling. The evaluation of the phenomenon is based on a basket of indicators evaluated from the national housing survey. Two indicators are used to calculate the fuel poverty of households: the energy effort rate and the feeling of cold.
ENERGY INSECURITY FOR THE POOREST HOUSEHOLDS
The concern with poor people is that they are the most affected by this difficulty. The reason is that the state of their homes has a poor or execrable thermal performance for some. The poorest households living in private housing suffer more from this precariousness. It is caused by the installation of outdated heating equipment and hot water production devices.
The use of obsolete appliances contributes to the increase in the energy bill of French people living in poverty. Households in financial difficulty sometimes go without heating in order to avoid having to pay high bills. Fuel poverty has multiple consequences: financial, technical, sanitary and social consequences, consequences on the health and safety of households and environmental consequences.