Fuel poverty (sometimes referred to as "energy poverty") is the condition of being unable to afford to adequately heat one's home. Households that spend more than 10% of their income on energy are deemed to be facing fuel poverty.

Fuel poverty is a result of three factors:

  • The vulnerability of low-income households.
  • The poor thermal properties of housing.
  • The rising cost of fuel.

Together, these factors can create a vicious circle resulting in unpaid bills, mounting cut-offs and a lack of heating, leading to health problems, social isolation and other issues. Fuel poverty affects the three pillars of sustainable development:

  • Social: solidarity, public interest, healthcare and quality of life for residents.
  • Economic: local economic development.
  • Environmental: improved building quality and reduced CO2 emissions.