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Solar cooker, Source: Junta de Andalucía

Andalusian Government organized a seminar on energy poverty

Andalusian Government organized a seminar on energy poverty

Participants had the chance to discuss and demonstrate various means to tackling the problem

We talk a lot about sustainability and energy efficiency and how these need to be implemented and introduced by all means necessary into the fabric and mindset of the modern lifestyle. The reality, however, is that there are many obstacles along the way that impede that progress and one of these obstacles are known as ‘energy poverty’.

That is why the Government of Andalusia organized the first online seminar under the Powerty Interreg Europe inviting 120 experts from six European countries where they had the chance to share and discuss different solutions and approaches to solving the energy poverty on the continent.

The issue of energy poverty goes beyond a simple lack of finances

So, what is energy poverty anyway? To many people, this may mean immediately mean an inability to pay one’s electrical and heating bills. That indeed is part of the what goes into the definition of energy poverty but if it were only a question of money then why differentiate from overall poverty?

Energy poverty extends beyond the lack of money to also include the lack of access to quality infrastructure and housing and even a lack of awareness and the right mindset about the question of living an energy-efficient lifestyle. Much of the older buildings in Europe are simply not efficient according to modern standards, even if their inhabitants can afford to pay their bills.

Here are some of the proposals discussed at the seminar:

The University of Huelva presented a solar cooker as an alternative energy source in the kitchen both to conventional cookers and photovoltaic panels. According to the data that was displayed, the solar cooker with a surface of only 1.54 m2 can generate power of 600 watts, equivalent to the one generated by 4.75 m2 photovoltaic panel.

The Andalusian company Quantum Energia Verde proposed a financing tool for people living in energy poverty. This concerned the renting of self-consumption renewable energy devices for as low as 1 euro a month without an initial investment. The equipment can be easily set up at home and results in immediate savings on energy bills.

Pylondata, also from Spain, presented its advanced data analysis tool which allows for the easier management of collective renewable energy installations by providing neighbours with information on the energy distribution and savings generated.

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