Fuel Poverty Statistics – Age UK’s Response

Source : Age UK
Published on 16 May 2013 01:30 PM

Age UK's response to the latest Fuel Poverty Statistics

Michelle Mitchell, Charity Director General of Age UK said:

'Worryingly, these latest figures show that the number of households in fuel poverty has remained stubbornly high. It is unacceptable that 4.5 million homes in the UK and 3.2 million in England are still struggling to pay for their electricity and gas – many of them older people who are particularly vulnerable to the cold.

'While the Government’s new Warm Homes Discount which is automatically paid to those on pension credit has clearly had an impact on cutting fuel poverty, it’s not enough.

'Behind today’s statistics lie many stories of real human suffering as people face the misery of not being able to afford to keep adequately warm. Cold homes pose a serious risk to people's health, increasing costs to health and care services to treat worsened cardiovascular and respiratory conditions, and contribute to the high numbers of older people we see dying over the cold winter months in the UK.

'Domestic energy prices have doubled since 2005, and the Government’s fuel poverty strategy has simply failed to keep up.

'The solution to fuel poverty has to be in making our homes more energy efficient so we get real benefit from the fuel we use. Yet in the last few months, the only tax-funded fuel poverty programme in England has been wound up, and we are now into unknown territory with the Green Deal.

'We now have a new tax on carbon emissions which is ultimately paid for by all energy consumers: it is high time the Government recycled the revenue that it raises into a vigorous home improvement programme to help households in fuel poverty save energy and keep warm.'

For a free copy of Age UK’s Winter Wrapped Up guide call Age UK Advice free on 0800 169 6565 or visit www.ageuk.org.uk to download a copy.

 

-- Ends --

Media contact: Mallary Gelb

Tel: 020 3033 1682

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Ref: mkmmskmm

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