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29 Nov 2023, 13:30
Carolina Kyllmann

Millions in Germany felt unable to heat home properly in 2022 due to expensive energy

Clean Energy Wire / Berliner Morgenpost

In 2022, 5.5 million people in Germany felt they were financially unable to keep their home adequately warm, according to figures by statistical office Destatis. Thus, the share of affected people doubled within a year to 6.6 percent of the population. "The main reason for the increase is likely to have been higher energy prices in connection with the war in Ukraine," Destatis wrote based on the results of an EU survey on income and living conditions. At around 14 percent, single parent households felt the most unable to heat their homes properly due to lack of money, followed by households with two adults and at least three children (9.7%) and people living alone (7.3%). Assessing whether their homes were adequately heated was at the discretion of the respondents.

A recent YouGov survey found, however, that around two thirds (66%) of homeowners in Germany do not want to renovate their homes to increase energy efficiency, reported newspaper Berliner Morgenpost. Of them, 32 percent outright refuse to upgrade the energy efficiency of their homes, while 34 percent said they were unable to bear the financial burden of renovating.

Across the EU, 9.3 percent of the population felt financially unable to warm their home properly in 2022, compared to 6.9 percent in 2021. Most affected were people in Bulgaria, with over a fifth (22.5%) saying they were unable to heat their home adequately, followed by Cyprus (19.2%), and Greece (18.7%). The lowest proportion was in Finland (1.4%), followed by Luxembourg (2.1%) and Slovenia (2.6%). Heating costs in Germany increased by up to 81 percent during the winter of 2022, according to an analysis by non-profit consultancy co2online. The German government introduced several measures to prevent spiralling energy costs, such as gas and electricity price caps for consumers and businesses, after the start of Russia’s war in Ukraine. Not all of the designated funds were used because wholesale market prices decreased.

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