Older, not colder
Older, not colder: we were struck today by a report released by AgeUK looking at the effects of being cold on our older population. Specifically, it focussed on hard to heat houses and the costs associated with that.
Wide ranging report
The report ranges widely to cover health issues and excess deaths, managing and understanding bills and different energy delivery systems, the different challenges posed by different housing types and proposes a solution: an ambitious government-funded reftrofit programme to bring housing up to the required standard.
The report’s point can be summed up by these two paragraphs:
The rising costs of energy and the difficulties of having a hard-to-heat
home mean that many older people on low incomes fear not being able
to pay their energy bills and are being forced to ration their heating, during
even the coldest weather.
Many older people who are faced with the stark choice between heating
or eating end up rationing both with disastrous effects on their physical
and mental health and wellbeing.
Benefits of energy efficiency programme
The benefits of bring up to standard our most inefficient housing (that in bands D to G) would be manifold. Housing brought up to spec would stay that way, gas supplies would be brought permanently to areas currently without that option, claner and renewable fuels could be used more widely, and that’s before the cost benefits to the NHS.
Including facts and figures, infographics and upsetting case studies, the report packs a punch. Read in conjunction with the NEA’s report on the shocking daily cost of needless cold-related illness, we hope those in a position to make the appropriate financial contribution will pay attention and take action.