Fuel Poverty Module

UNO now has a dedicated tab where information about the household's fuel poverty status can be obtained.  The module was developed as part of a joint research project with Richard Moore and was funded by several organisations including NEA, Joseph Rowntree Foundation, EAGA Charitable Trust and Citizen's Advice.  More information about the development of the module can be found here.

UNO’s Fuel Poverty Module:

  • allows fuel poverty status, both LIHC and 10% definitions, to be determined.
  • calculates the fuel poverty gap, the amount by which the running costs would have to be lowered for the household not to be fuel poor anymore.
  • calculates the fuel poverty risk, the amount by which if the running costs increase, the household would be fuel poor.
  • calculates the Fuel Poverty Energy Efficiency Rating, the indicator by which the Government's fuel poverty targets have been set.

    FP Article Figure 1

    This is how the module looks when accessed for a particular dwelling.  Data on the household composition and income as well as how they pay for fuel can be entered, once complete the result is shown on the graph and in the Summary of Results.  The graph is a representation of the four outcomes that are possible under the Low income High Cost definition of fuel poverty, letting the user know at a glance where the household falls with relation to fuel poverty.

    If a household falls in the LIHC quadrant then the gap is also displayed on the graph and if it falls in the LILC quadrant then the fuel poverty risk is displayed.  These two figures allow an assessment of the severity of fuel poverty (in the case of the gap) and a way to quantify how the household is at risk of being fuel poor.  For more information on the definition of fuel poverty and how it relates to the gap and risk, please see this article.

    The calculation can be personalised to make it more relevant to the user's needs.  The thresholds used in the fuel poverty calculations, the poverty line and median national running cost are editable, allowing them to be changed for the purposes of research or to reflect local conditions.  In addition, the fuel prices used (both p/kWh and standing charge) can also be set directly.  Otherwise, regional defaults derived from the English Housing Survey are used.

    The fuel poverty module is available to all our clients as a standard part of an UNO installation.  It is already used by three Fuel Poverty Gas Network Extension Schemes to assess the fuel poverty status of homes for the purpose of joining them to the gas network.  If you are interested in using the fuel poverty module, please contact us.