Official figures released by the Department for Energy and Climate Change suggest that, in 2009, there were around 5.5 million fuel poor households in the UK, up from 4.5 million in 2008. A household is said to be in fuel poverty if it has to spend over 10% of its income to maintain an adequate level of warmth.
Meanwhile, a survey by uSwitch suggests that fuel poverty has spiralled further, and that 24% of UK households are now classed as fuel poor. 36% of working class households are in fuel poverty, but uSwitch believe that the problem is rapidly spreading up the income scale, with 15% of middle class households fuel poor as well. Single working parents are most likely to be fuel poor, with 39% of this group classed as being in fuel poverty according to the uSwitch survey.
Source: Credit Action – August 2011 edition