Publication - Publication

Fuel poverty and extreme fuel poverty: estimates

Published: 14 May 2019
Directorate:
Housing and Social Justice Directorate
Part of:
Housing
ISBN:
9781787818286

This publication provides the latest estimates of Fuel Poverty and Extreme Fuel Poverty under the proposed new definition, following the amendments agreed at Stage 2 of the Fuel Poverty (Targets, Definition and Strategy) (Scotland) Bill.

19 page PDF

566.0 kB

19 page PDF

566.0 kB

Contents
Fuel poverty and extreme fuel poverty: estimates
Change in fuel poverty and extreme fuel poverty rates under the proposed new definition, across a range of household and dwelling characteristics, between 2016 and 2017.

19 page PDF

566.0 kB

Change in fuel poverty and extreme fuel poverty rates under the proposed new definition, across a range of household and dwelling characteristics, between 2016 and 2017.

Please note, only differences which are statistically significant are quoted when comparing fuel poverty rates for 2016 and 2017, which take the sample sizes into consideration.

Under the proposed new definition, 23.7% (583,000) of households were living in fuel poverty in 2017, similar to the 25.7% (613,000) rate in 2016. The rate of extreme fuel poverty under the new definition was 11.9%, which was similar to the 2016 figure (12.6%).

There was no change in fuel poverty rates between 2016 and 2017 for rural areas (28% in 2016 and 29% in 2017 under the new definition) or urban areas (25% in 2016 and 23% in 2017). Extreme fuel poverty also did not change between 2016 and 2017, in urban areas or rural areas. In addition, each of the 6-fold urban/rural categories saw no change in fuel poverty rates or extreme fuel poverty rates between 2016 and 2017, with the exception of fuel poverty in large urban areas, which decreased between 2016 (26%) and 2017 (21%).

The decrease in large urban areas could be explained, at least in part, by changes in the price of gas, which is more commonly used as a primary heating fuel in large urban areas than other fuel types. Households using gas as their primary heating fuel, which are more prevalent in large urban areas, saw fuel poverty rates decrease from 24% to 21% between 2016 and 2017. This can be explained by gas prices falling in 2017 though not as steeply as in 2016. Extreme fuel poverty rates for households using gas as a primary heating fuel were similar between 2016 and 2017 at around 9%-10%, therefore the decrease in prices was not enough to lift households out of extreme fuel poverty.

Households using oil as their primary heating fuel saw an increase in fuel poverty rates from 18% in 2016 up to 27% in 2017; extreme fuel poverty rates also increased from 10% in 2016 up to 18% in 2017. This follows a 24% increase in liquid fuel prices in the period although prices would have to increase by another 45% to reach their 2013 levels. Oil is more commonly used in rural areas than urban, however this was not enough to affect the rural fuel poverty rate which remained similar between 2016 (28%) and 2017 (29%). The fuel poverty rate for remote rural areas was 39% in 2017, which was similar to 2016, while extreme fuel poverty rates were also similar (26% in both years).

Other characteristics where there was a significant difference in fuel poverty new definition rates between 2016 and 2017 included:

  • families (23% in 2016, 17% in 2017);
  • terraced houses (31% in 2016, 25% in 2017);
  • households living in dwellings built between 1945 and 1964 (33% in 2016, 27% in 2017) or 1965 and 1982 (29% in 2016 and 23% in 2017);
  • those living in dwellings rated EPC D (28% in 2016, 23% in 2017);
  • households living in the 15% most deprived areas (35% in 2016, 27% in 2017).
  • Mortgaged households (12% in 2016, 8% in 2017).

Extreme fuel poverty rates were similar between 2016 and 2017 across most household and dwelling characteristics, however there were some exceptions where significant changes were observed including:

  • Mortgaged households (7% in 2016, 4% in 2017)
  • Households with a weekly net income between £200 and £300 per week (16% in 2016, 22% in 2017)
  • Dwellings built between 1919 and 1944 (10% in 2016, 16% in 2017)
  • Dwellings with oil as a primary heating fuel (10% in 2016, 18% in 2017)

The fuel poverty rates and extreme fuel poverty rates for various household and dwelling characteristics under the new definition, for 2016 and 2017, are shown in Tables 3 and 4 below.

Table 3: Fuel Poverty Rates, proposed new definition, comparing 2016 and 2017

2016 2017 * if statistically significant
Number of fuel poor households (thousands) % of households who are fuel poor Number of fuel poor households (thousands) % of households who are fuel poor
Total 631 25.7% 583 23.7%
Household Type
Older households 193 25% 211 26%
Families 123 23% 100 17% *
Other households 314 28% 272 26%
Location
Urban overall 515 25% 464 23%
Large urban 227 26% 182 21% *
Other urban 186 22% 195 23%
Accessible small towns 67 30% 55 24%
Small remote towns 34 37% 32 36%
Rural overall 116 28% 119 29%
Accessible rural 62 23% 62 23%
Remote rural 55 36% 57 39%
Tenure
Owned 158 20% 150 18%
Mortgaged 85 12% 56 8% *
LA / public 155 44% 146 39%
HA / coop 113 42% 99 39%
PRS 120 37% 132 39%
Private 364 20% 338 18%
Social 267 43% 245 39%
EPC Band (SAP 2012)
B-C 205 21% 208 20%
D 298 28% 238 23% *
E 92 29% 84 30%
F-G 36 36% 53 45%
Household Income (weekly)
<£200 281 91% 240 93%
£200-£300 228 49% 222 55%
£300-£400 89 23% 83 22%
£400-£500 17 6% 23 7%
£500-£700 12 3% 12 3%
£700+ 4 1% 2 0%
Dwelling Type
Detached 96 17% 96 17%
Semi-detached 106 22% 98 20%
Terraced 168 31% 134 25% *
Tenement 170 30% 167 29%
Other flats 92 29% 88 28%
Dwelling Age
Pre-1919 124 26% 115 25%
1919-1944 71 25% 85 29%
1945-1964 174 33% 144 27% *
1965-1982 158 29% 120 23% *
Post-1982 104 17% 118 18%
Primary Heating Fuel
Gas 468 24% 414 21% *
Oil 29 18% 39 27% *
Electric 110 39% 110 38%
Other 23 38% 20 32%
SIMD: Most Deprived 15%
Yes 137 35% 107 27% *
No 494 24% 476 23%
Gas Grid
On 530 26% 474 23%
Off 101 25% 109 26%

Table 4: Extreme fuel Poverty Rates, proposed new definition, comparing 2016 and 2017

2016 2017 * if statistically significant
Number of extreme fuel poor households (thousands) % of households who are in extreme fuel poverty Number of extreme fuel poor households (thousands) % of households who are in extreme fuel poverty
Total 308 12.6% 293 11.9%
Household Type
Older households 108 14% 119 15%
Families 38 7% 36 6%
Other households 162 14% 138 13%
Location
Urban overall 231 11% 215 10%
Large urban 110 13% 95 11%
Other urban 72 9% 79 9%
Accessible small towns 32 14% 26 11%
Small remote towns 17 19% 16 18%
Rural overall 77 19% 78 19%
Accessible rural 38 15% 40 15%
Remote rural 39 26% 38 26%
Tenure
Owned 94 12% 88 11%
Mortgaged 51 7% 27 4% *
LA / public 62 17% 53 14%
HA / coop 41 15% 45 18%
PRS 61 19% 80 24%
Private 205 11% 195 11%
Social 103 16% 98 16%
EPC Band (SAP 2012)
B-C 82 8% 73 7%
D 130 12% 117 11%
E 62 19% 58 21%
F-G 34 34% 44 38%
Household Income (weekly)
<£200 204 66% 172 67%
£200-£300 73 16% 89 22% *
£300-£400 24 6% 23 6%
£400-£500 3 1% 6 2%
£500-£700 0 0% 3 1%
£700+ 4 1% 1 0%
Dwelling Type
Detached 68 12% 62 11%
Semi-detached 55 12% 53 11%
Terraced 75 14% 55 10%
Tenement 78 14% 85 15%
Other flats 32 10% 38 12%
Dwelling Age
Pre-1919 84 17% 76 16%
1919-1944 28 10% 47 16% *
1945-1964 75 14% 60 11%
1965-1982 70 13% 54 11%
Post-1982 51 8% 55 8%
Primary Heating Fuel
Gas 205 10% 178 9%
Oil 16 10% 27 18% *
Electric 75 27% 77 26%
Other 12 20% 12 20%
SIMD: Most Deprived 15%
Yes 44 11% 35 9%
No 264 13% 258 12%
Gas Grid
On 243 12% 221 11%
Off 65 16% 73 17%

Contact

Email: esther.laird@gov.scot