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Energy poverty
European Union Electricity Market Glossary

 

 

A straightforward definition of energy poverty does not exist (ACER/CEER Annual Report of 22 October 2018 on the Results of Monitoring the Internal Electricity and Natural Gas Markets in 2017, Consumer Empowerment Volume).

 

The Third Energy Package only alludes to energy poverty, and the Electricity and Gas Directives do not defne specifc measures to protect vulnerable consumers.

 

It is left to the EU Member States to decide to what extent specific measures are introduced in the energy laws or whether this belongs to the remit of the general social security system.

 

The subsequent Package - Clean Energy for All Europeans - contains clear actions to be undertaken and the EU Member States are required to monitor energy poverty as well as to take measures against it.

 

When preparing the national climate and energy plans under Article 3(3)(d) of the Regulation of the European Parliament and of the Council on the Governance of the Energy Union the EU Member States are required to assess the number of households in energy poverty taking into account the necessary domestic energy services needed to guarantee basic standards of living in the relevant national context, existing social policy and other relevant policies, as well as indicative European Commission guidance on relevant indicators for energy poverty.

 

In the event that the EU Member State finds that it has a significant number of households in energy poverty as supported by its assessment based on verifiable data, it must include in its plan a national indicative objective to reduce energy poverty.

 

Where available, those Member States concerned are required to outline in their plans policies and measures addressing energy poverty, including social policy measures and other relevant national programmes.

 

According to the said Regulation on the Governance of the Energy Union, the EU Member States’ reporting on energy poverty included in integrated national energy and climate progress report must cover:

 

- information on progress towards the national indicative objective to reduce the number of households in energy poverty; 


- quantitative information on the number of households in energy poverty, and, where available,


- information on policies and measures addressing energy poverty.

 

The European Commission is required to share the above data with the European Energy Poverty Observatory.

 

The compliance with the above requirements is a precondition for the application by the Member State of public interventions in price-setting for the supply of electricity (as specified by the recasted Electricity Regulation).

 

The said ACER/CEER Annual Report of 22 October 2018 noted that in 2017 only 5 CEER Members had definitions of energy poverty, i.e. Cyprus, France, Great Britain, Romania and Spain.

 

According to these definitions, the percentages of energy poor people in the above 5 countries were: 4.6% in Cyprus, 8% in Spain, 9.1% (electricity) and 14.2% (gas) in France, 10.3% in Romania and 11.1% in Great Britain.

 

Cyprus and Spain however, only had a definition of energy poverty in electricity and not in gas.

 

When it comes to reasons for energy poverty the three main drivers can be differentiated:


- firstly, the costs of energy are crucial and they are the result of market forces;


- the second important part of the energy bill are network tariffs, which are regulated (approved by national regulatory authorities),


- thirdly, taxes and levies imposed on energy are impacted by political decisions regarding the funding of the energy transition.

 

 

 

Regulation of the European Parliament and of the Council on the Governance of the Energy Union

 

Article 24

 

Integrated Reporting on Energy Poverty

 

Where the second subparagraph of point (d) of Article 3(3) applies, the Member State concerned shall include in its integrated national energy and climate progress report:

(a) information on progress towards the national indicative objective to reduce the number of households in energy poverty; and

(b) quantitative information on the number of households in energy poverty, and, where available, information on policies and measures addressing energy poverty.

The Commission shall share data communicated by Member States pursuant to this Article with the European Energy Poverty Observatory.

 

Directive of European Parliament and of the Council on the promotion of the use of energy from renewable sources (recast), Recital 65

 

Empowering jointly acting renewable self-consumers also provides opportunities for renewable energy communities to advance energy efficiency at household level and help fight energy poverty through reduced consumption and lower supply tariffs. Member States should take appropriate advantage of this opportunity by, inter alia, assessing the possibility to enable participation by households that might otherwise not be able to participate, including vulnerable consumers and tenants.

 

 

 

 

 

 

IMG 0744

    Documentation    




 

 

Regulation of the European Parliament and of the Council on the Governance of the Energy Union, Article 3(3), Article 24

 

Christoph Strünck, Fighting Energy Poverty in Europe – Responses, Instruments, Successes

 

ACER/CEER Annual Report of 22 October 2018 on the Results of Monitoring the Internal Electricity and Natural Gas Markets in 2017, Consumer Empowerment Volume



 

 

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EU Energy Poverty Observatory

 

 

 

 

Last Updated on Friday, 22 February 2019 10:23
 

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