Preventing fuel poverty by facilitating energy efficiency and the use of renewable energy sources

Policy Advice & Energy Economics International Projects & Technical Assistance

Project partner

Katholische Sozialakademie Österreichs

Project description

People in situation of poverty or at risk of poverty – representing about 12% of the Austrian population or round 1 million people – typically have limited access to energy efficiency improvement (EEI) measures as well as to an increased use of renewable energy sources (RES). From a social as well as from an energy policy perspective, this observation is critical: On the one hand, the exclusion from EEI and RES measures may lead to a lasting fuel poverty of the persons concerned, on the other hand, if a considerable share of the population is unable to participate in climate change mitigation measures, this has also serious impacts on the success of the national climate change policy.

Given this background, the general goal of the proposed project is to contribute to preventing fuel poverty in Austrian households by facilitating the access of vulnerable households to energy efficiency improvement (EEI) and an increased use of renewable energy sources (RES).

In order to reach this goal, an analysis of three main influencing factors will be performed:

  • the experiences of social organisations with fuel poverty in Austria;
  • qualitative interviews and a quantitative survey with vulnerable households;
  • institutional framework conditions for the use of EEI and RES in energy poor households and international examples tackling fuel poverty by increased use of EEI/RES.

This analysis will enable the project team to develop useful information material for social organisations and their clients. The analysis of the institutional framework will result in policy recommendations. The access to required data and information and the practicability of the project results is ensured by an intensive dialogue with an advisory group composed of relevant social organisations.