Stamp out fuel poverty says expert

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AN academic has told a conference in the Capital that efforts must be increased to stamp out fuel poverty by focusing more on improving people’s homes.

Dr Brenda Boardman, who popularised the term “fuel poverty” in a 1991 book, said more had to be done after watching the trend increase in recent years. The term applies to households where at least 10 per cent of income is spent on fuel.

Dr Boardman, of Oxford University, spoke out weeks after a report warned that the average Scottish household may fall into the category from this year.

At a conference at the Chartered Institute of Housing in Princes Street yesterday, she said: “The main problem in Scotland is the growing number of fuel poor.

“It’s a combination of rising fuel prices and inefficient homes.”