Energy Cities proposition 05 - Eradicate local fuel poverty

Empowering local players

2014

Energy Cities l’association européenne des autorités locales en transition énergétique

Energy Cities is a network of more than 1,000 cities in 30 different countries. Convinced that energy transition is more than a question of renewable energy or advanced technologies, Energy Cities proposes to use resources in a reasoned way, to strengthen local participation and to improve the quality of life in a democratic Europe. In 2014, the network presents 30 proposals for the Energy Transition of Territories.

They are a source of inspiration to think and act differently. To finally turn the page on unsustainable practices that lead us into energy, climate and perhaps economic and social dead ends.

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Energy Cities proposition 05 - Eradicate local fuel poverty

The problem at hand

The era of cheap energy is over. The costs for accessing the energy sources, as well as production and trans -port costs, are making further increases in energy prices inevitable. The introduction of energy and carbon taxes instead of labour taxes that penalise the economy also has a role to play in this. Taxing a rare product leads to a reduction in its consumption, one of the major components of the energy transition.

Therefore we are going to use less of a more expensive energy. The thermal quality of our dwellings and the performance of our equipment will improve. A more virtuous approach to urban planning will make us adopt new modes of transport, leading to behavioural changes.

During this transition phase, an increasing proportion of the population will not be able to pay for heating and transport, two essential functions of everyday life. Several countries have adopted a plan to fight fuel poverty, with varying results. Action must be taken at the local level, where social situations are better known.

Proposal

A local fuel poverty eradication plan is an accurate and geo-localised diagnosis of both collective and individual situations.

A strategy is also needed to provide sustainable solutions. Emergency situations are a matter for conventional social welfare services. But the overall aim is to eradicate the cause: the lack of insulation in dwellings, poorly efficient heating systems and peri-urban sprawl. An energy transition that does not consider social issues will not work.

Conditions for success

  • Drawing up a set of indicators to monitor the progress of fuel poverty eradication.

  • Making the results visible.

  • Establishing a solid relationship between social, energy and housing departments, energy suppliers and all potentially interested partners.

  • Linking local actions with national schemes.

  • Networking with other cities engaged in similar approaches.

Références

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