What is the definition of ‘Energy Poverty’?
The technical definition of a household suffering energy poverty is when they need to spend 10% or more of their income on fuel to keep the house temperature at a healthy level. But it’s generally accepted that a household is energy poor if they need to spend an excessive amount of their income on heating.
The World Health Organisation says that the healthy temperature for a home is 21 degrees in the main living area and 18 degrees in the rest of the house. If people are home all day, heating needs to be available for 16 hours per day; and in households where people are mainly away at study or work during the day, that heating should be available for 9 hours per day.
Source: Statistics New Zealand