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The Health Impacts of Cold Homes and Fuel Poverty
The Marmot Review Team was commissioned by Friends of the Earth to write this report which reviews the existing evidence of the direct and indirect health impacts suffered by those living in fuel poverty and cold housing. It makes the case for aligning the environmental and health benefits of reducing fuel poverty and improving the thermal efficiency of the existing housing stock.
The report is available to download from this page (see above). There are also some other documents which might be of interest:
On March 2011 the SoS for Energy and Climate Change announced that Prof. Hills had been requested to understake a review of the current fuel poverty target and definition. The Institute of Health Equity has submitted a response to the interim report.
Fuel poverty is a long-standing health issue: the impact of cold housing on health and the stresses brought on by living in fuel poverty have been recognised for decades by researchers, medical professionals and policy makers alike. At the same time, it is an issue that often gets dismissed as the 'tough nature of things' because our housing stock is old and cold housing is so widespread that many have come to regard it as a normal state of affairs. It should not be so. Cold housing and fuel poverty can be successfully tackled through policies and interventions if there is a will to do so. There is a social gradient in fuel poverty: the lower your income the more likely you are to be at risk of fuel poverty. Inequalities that are avoidable are fundamentally unfair - fuel poverty is avoidable and it contributes to social and health inequalities.
By Institute of Health Equity May 2011