Report: Low Income Households In New England Spend More On Energy | New Hampshire Public Radio

Report: Low Income Households In New England Spend More On Energy

Sep 20, 2020

Credit Flikr Creative Commons / Claudio Schwarz

A new study says New England has the largest gap in energy burdens between low-income energy burdens and median energy burdens than any other region in the country. 

Household energy burden is the percentage of annual income spent on yearly energy bills.

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The study from the advocacy group American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy found that low-income households in the region spend a median of 10.5 percent of their income on energy.

That’s about three times higher than the median energy burden in New England.

The report found that while low-income and communities of color consume less energy than wealthier households, they’re also more likely to live in less energy efficient housing, and that inefficiency is a major contributor to higher energy burdens.

The council also found that low-income households, Black, Hispanic, Native American, renters and older adult households all have disproportionately higher energy burdens than the national median household.

The study says that clean energy investments in things like energy efficiency, weatherization and renewable energy on the part of local governments, could provide a long-term solution to lowering those high energy burdens.

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