Around half fuel poverty homes include person 60+
Published on 14 July 2011 01:30 PM
Just under half (48.5%) of all households in fuel poverty contain one person aged 60 or over
New figures released by Department Energy Climate Change (DECC) today show the number of fuel poor households has increased to 5.5 million for 2009, a rise of 1 million since 2008. Just under half (48.5%) of all households in fuel poverty contain one person aged 60 or over.
Michelle Mitchell, Charity Director at Age UK, said:
'With new figures showing almost half of people living in fuel poverty are aged over 60, today's eye watering increase in fuel poor households shows this problem continues to hit older people the hardest.
'What's more worrying is this figure only looks set to increase as energy companies announce further double digit per cent price increases, leaving more older people desperately trying to meet rising bills. Research shows many older people are forced to choose between eating and heating their homes, causing illness and in extreme cases, needless deaths.
'It is astonishing that in the face of this scandalous increase, help for fuel poor households through the Warm Front scheme is being phased out and the promised solutions contained in Green Deal don't come into force until late 2012 - too late for the millions of people struggling to heat their homes this winter.
'These figures should send a clear warning to Government that it is losing the war against fuel poverty and action must be urgently taken to prevent another similar increase next year. The only sure way to help people manage rising energy costs is to help them properly insulate their homes and reduce their need for energy - especially for households in fuel poverty.'
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