Energy efficiency & fuel poverty

The past few years has seen a huge increase in community energy organisations working on efficiency advice and fuel poverty services. Community led organisations are well placed to deliver this work - they tend to have stronger local connections, and a real ability to influence to behaviour change and the uptake of efficiency measures in people's homes. If you are a community energy organisation in this work, you can be in high demand by organisations such as Local Authorities and charities who vunerable consumers because of your position and local knowledge. 

There are some key facts, tips and further resources however to consider

First, have confidence - community organisations achieve a much higher rate of return on investment generally when they lead these projects. The below infographic shows a 10:1 rate of return measured by research partners at the Bristol Poverty Institute. Share this with potential partners (e.g. Local Authorities) and funders to start your work and support. 

Second, get trained and ensure other supports in place (e.g. safeguarding, GDPR). This is not an easy journey!

Third, think about mixing several different, complementary activities. Some of the best community energy efficiency and fuel poverty projects do this (see examples below). They take their audiences on a journey towards installing energy efficiency measures and also then adopting energy efficient behaviours. E.g. integrating a number of the below activities into one streamlined pathway. You may however choose to focus on one activity, depending on your organisation capacity and skills avaliable (e.g. if your organisation doesn't have someone who can do house assessments, but may be able to train to deliver energy advice) 

Advice & Retrofit activities

  • Insulation and heavy measures (deep retrofit services) 
  • Basic draught-proofing (shallow retrofit services)
  • Building assessments/audits
  • Demonstration homes and open eco-homes
  • Advice/support to install renewable tech
  • Energy monitoring 
  • Energy switching 
  • Funding advice (connecting people with government schemes and bills support) 
  • Advice surgeries (home visits, events, telephone advice)
  • Awareness-raising (e.g. stalls, workshops, cafes)

Finally, ensure you monitor impact and evaluate as you go - this is a competitive area for funding, so make sure you are monitoring impact from the start. There are a number of ways to do this, including paper forms (templates to be uploaded) and online CRM tools (event recording to be uploaded)

Further links and resources 

Video Resources

Documents & Downloads