Metropolitan Research Institute and Buildings Performance Institute Europe has published a new paper titled Overview report on the energy poverty concept – Energy poverty in the privately-owned, multi-family environment as a part of the Horizon 2020 ComAct project.
The study reviews the various approaches towards energy poverty and the current energy poverty situation in Europe. The analysis highlighted Central-Eastern European and South-East European regions with a special focus on the five pilot countries of ComAct: Bulgaria, Hungary, Lithuania, North Macedonia, and Ukraine. The paper points out that one indicator cannot capture all relevant aspects of energy poverty, and target groups are different depending on the indicator. Therefore, we suggest that multiple indicators are combined, considering the political nature of defining energy poverty as well. One of the conclusions of the analysis on the post-socialist and post-soviet region is that the privatization and liberalization of the energy sector, the low wages, and the high homeownership rate leads to specific problems regarding the fight against energy poverty. The study also highlights that few subsidy schemes support deep renovation programs, which we consider the most sustainable solution to energy poverty and energy inefficiency at the same time. According to our analysis, policy instruments effectively combatting energy poverty include financial support for structural building renovation as well as auditing, and information and awareness-raising measures targeted at the household.