The European Parliament commissioned the Fraunhofer Institute for Systems and Innovation Research ISI, SQ Consult (the Netherlands) and the Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya (Spain) to examine the relevance of energy efficiency for low-income households and to develop proposals for how to design policies targeting specific groups.
The study starts by classifying and analyzing the multiple benefits that energy efficiency has on low-income households. Impacts of energy efficiency are classified in environmental, economic and social impacts. It continues with an analysis of barriers to energy efficiency investments for low-income households. The most relevant barriers for low-income households are analyzed in detail. The study proceeds with an assessment of energy efficiency and social policies that can contribute to remove these barriers. After presenting a comparative analysis of general policies, the study concludes with the elaboration of a set of policy recommendations to improve energy efficiency in the low-income segment. The While six main recommendations are provided in the study, it includes specific suggestions for their consideration in the EU policy framework, the future recast of the EED, the EPBD and the Labelling Directive, and in the design of more effective policies at Member State level.
The analysis is based on a review of scientific literature and policy reports, semi-structured interviews with selected stakeholders pertinent to the policy environment of residential EE as well as an analysis of the policy landscape of energy efficiency based on the MURE database on energy efficiency policies.