The number of households in fuel poverty has dropped, according to statistics published today (12 June) by the Department of Energy & Climate Change (DECC).

The report is based on new legal framework to monitor fuel poverty in England using the Low Income High Costs Indicator (LIHC) through the Energy Act 2013. 

Relating to 2012, the statistics highlight:

Although it is difficult to accurately isolate absolute reasons for changes because of the relative nature of the LIHC measure, the results show that changes in income, fuel costs and energy efficiency levels among fuel-poor households are broadly consistent with the changes seen for the population as a whole.

The reduction in the number of fuel-poor households, coupled with the improvements to incomes and energy efficiency levels for households, has reduced the aggregate and average fuel poverty gap.

The report also shows that all fuel-poor households come from the bottom four income decile groups, and the likelihood of being fuel-poor increases markedly with lower SAP scores. Those living in privately rented accomodation have continued to have the highest fuel poverty rates.

Energy & Climate Change Minister Greg Barker said: “I am encouraged by this further modest fall in the number of households living in fuel poverty. This welcome progress shows that, while we can’t control volatile energy prices, we can continue to improve the energy efficiency of our housing stock.

“The Coalition government is doing everything it can to help hard-pressed families keep their energy bills down. The Energy Company Obligation and Green Deal have supported over 372,000 low income and vulnerable households.

“Last winter, the Warm Home Discount provided over 1.2 million of the lowest income pensioners with £135 off their electricity bills, while our (on average) £50 reduction in bills will provide further help.”