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Fuel Poverty in Scotland Essay Example

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Fuel Poverty in Scotland

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Fuel Poverty in Scotland. Low incomes earned by the Scottish people have often been cited to be one of the main causes of absolute poverty in Scotland (Morrison & Shortt, 2008). Therefore, this implies that households cannot afford to pay energy costs or acquire central heating systems. For instance, due to better changes in personal incomes with little changes in the prices of fuel, coupled with improved energy efficiency, the fuel poverty rate in Scotland fell to a low mark of 27.1 % between October 2011 and mid-2012 as shown in the chart below (“High Level Summary,” 2013). Therefore, it is evident that an increase in personal incomes for Scottish people can help eradicate the problem of fuel poverty in the country because households will be able to afford to pay for energy and getting connected to cheap common alternative sources of energy such the main gas network.

Pensioner Households and Lone Parent HouseholdsFuel poverty in Scotland has been associated with single pensioner households and lone parent households. Statistics from the 2001 census data indicate that the percentage of married (including separated and remarried) people in Scotland fell from 58% in 1991 to 54% in 2001 while the proportion of those who were divorced rose from 5% to 7% (“Key Facts,” 2011). These factors contribute to fuel poverty because the rates of income for single pensioners and lone parent homes are considered to be lower even though their fuel costs tend to be a bit lower (“Key Facts,” 2011). However, this results in a situation where the cumulative burden of fuel costs for these groups tend to be higher relative to their amount of incomes; thus, making such households unable to pay for their energy costs causing them to fall in and out fuel poverty.Low Average Size of HouseholdsAnother indicator, which has been associated with fuel poverty in Scotland is the low average size of households. Statistics from the 2001 census indicate on average the number of people per a home was 2.27 in 2001 compared to 2.44 in 1991 . Fuel Poverty in Scotland.

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STVNews, 2014. Scottish Government launches £224m winter fuel poverty scheme. Available at: http://news.stv.tv/scotland/295502-scottish-government-launches-224m-winter-fuel-poverty-scheme/ [Accessed 15 Jan. 2014].

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