Low Carbon Heat and Rural Fuel Poverty: Lessons from across Europe

Community Energy Plus, a Cornwall-based charity delivering local solutions to fuel poverty, energy efficiency and sustainable energy,  have conducted a study on rural fuel poverty.

Rural communities have higher fuel poverty levels due to low incomes and expensive heating fuels. Some European countries with more low carbon heat take-up have lower fuel poverty levels than the UK.

Their project, funded by the Eaga Charitable Trust, provided a comparative analysis between the UK and other countries to identify drivers and barriers affecting take-up.


The findings from the study, completed in November 2017, can be broadly categorised by two key areas, that of policy and of practice, therefore the following resources targeted towards the information needs of specific audiences have been produced

- Full Report 

Chapter titles:
– Executive summary
– Introduction: Defining the challenge
– Policy drivers for fuel poverty and low carbon heat
– Progress and take up of low carbon heat in EU member states
– Learning from best practice
– Conclusions

-Best Practice Guide

This best practice guide is based on a study by Community Energy Plus, to research the use of low carbon heat in rural areas and to determine its potential to address the complex issue of fuel poverty. It explores the lessons to be learned from EU member states that are leading on the use of low carbon heat and that have below average fuel poverty levels. Key drivers and barriers have been identified to draw comparisons and make recommendations for next steps in the low carbon heat agenda.

-Low Carbon Heat Poster

This poster has been created for use in community consultations and events to help raise awareness and increase participation in district heat projects.

-Policy Brief

This policy brief is based on a research study undertaken as a review of existing literature and data, supported by further consultation, to discuss the role of low carbon heat. From a perspective of fuel poverty and rurality, the research outlines opportunities and best practice examples of low carbon heat projects across the EU. It identifies key drivers and barriers in the take up of low carbon heat in the UK, supported by comparative learning experiences from other EU member states.


Contacts for further information

Jennifer Hannam
Project Officer (Renewables and Communities)
Community Energy Plus
Jennifer@cep.org.uk / 01872 245566 ext 212

Dr Tim Jones
Chief Executive
Community Energy Plus
tim@cep.org.uk / 01872 245566 ext 211



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