Department of Energy and Climate Change
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STATISTICAL PRESS RELEASE - Fuel poverty statistics 2009

STATISTICAL PRESS RELEASE - Fuel poverty statistics 2009

News Release issued by the COI News Distribution Service on 21 October 2009

The latest Annual Report on Fuel Poverty Statistics 2009 is published today by the Department of Energy and Climate Change – headline figures refer to fuel poverty levels in the UK and England in 2007.

The latest Annual Report on Fuel Poverty Statistics 2009 is published today by the Department of Energy and Climate Change – headline figures refer to fuel poverty levels in the UK and England in 2007.

This report includes the following highlights:

- In 2007, there were around 4m fuel poor households in the UK, up from 3.5m in 2006. In England, there were around 2.8m fuel poor households up from 2.4m in 2006.

- The increase in fuel poverty between 2006 and 2007 has been caused by rising fuel prices, whilst rising incomes and improvements in the energy efficiency of housing continue to help households from falling into fuel poverty and in some cases have removed fuel poor households from fuel poverty.

- Since the fuel poverty low of 2004, domestic energy prices have risen, by 80% between 2004 and 2008, driving the trend in fuel poverty in recent years.

- Fuel poverty amongst vulnerable households for 2007 stood at 3.25m households (UK) and 2.3m households (England), up 0.5m and 0.4m respectively from 2006. A vulnerable household is one that contains the elderly, children or somebody who is disabled or long term sick.

- Projections for England indicate a likely upper bound of around 3.6m fuel poor households in 2008 and 4.6m households in 2009. These projected rises are driven by increasing fuel prices and include conservative estimates of changes in income and energy efficiency of dwellings between 2007 and 2009. In addition, they do not take into account the effect of an increase in social tariffs in recent years. Fuel poverty figures for 2008 and 2009 will only be known when we have detailed results of the surveys on household income and efficiency programmes, and will be available for publication in 2010 and 2011 respectively.

Also released today:

Fuel Poverty Monitoring – Indicators 2009

This is an internet-only annex summarising a range of indicators on income, fuel prices and housing that can provide a useful background to consider alongside the Statistics Report.

Fuel Poverty 2007 – Detailed Tables

This document presents a series of detailed tables analysing the headline fuel poverty statistics for 2007, published on the internet.

Trends in Fuel Poverty

This internet publication brings together detailed tables from 2003 to 2007 allowing detailed comparisons of fuel poverty over time.

2006 sub-regional fuel poverty figures

2006 fuel poverty figures modelled and presented at Local Authority and Parliamentary Constituency level.

Notes to Editors

1. The Annual Report on Fuel Poverty Statistics 2009, compiled by the Department of Energy and Climate Change, contains tables and extensive commentary, charts and technical notes. As well as giving new data for 2007 it also presents data for earlier years, findings from research undertaken over the year and projections.

2. The Annual Report on Fuel Poverty Statistics 2009 is available to purchase from the Stationery Office, or online for free download, alongside the other reports published today at: http://www.decc.gov.uk/en/content/cms/statistics/fuelpov_stats/fuelpov_stats.aspx

3. A household is said to be in fuel poverty if it needs to spend more than 10 per cent of its income on fuel to maintain an adequate level of warmth (usually defined as 21 degrees for the main living area, and 18 degrees for other occupied rooms).

4. Fuel poverty is measured by combining survey data from the English House Condition Survey over a two year period with fuel prices and income. The 2007 fuel poverty figures are based on survey data, fuel prices and income in 2006 and 2007. Full details of the methodology for calculating fuel poverty are published on the DECC website.

5. In addition to those granted named 24 hour pre-release access to these statistics, the Prime Minister also received 24 hour pre-briefing ahead of the public release

Contacts:

Department of Energy and Climate Change
nds.decc@coi.gsi.gov.uk

Philippa Heap
Phone: 0300 068 5218
philippa.heap@decc.gsi.gov.uk

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