Energy poverty is a problem experienced by large groups in our society, a problem we know too little about. Living in a cold home with mounting energy debt and the threat of being cut off is a daily concern for far more people than we think. Our welfare state takes care of many, but certainly not all. Mariëlle Feenstra, a researcher at the University of Twente, is committed to raising awareness of this issue. The hidden faces of people in energy poverty deserve to be seen, especially those of women.
“Due to the ongoing coronavirus crisis, the outlook is alarming. In a recently published report, the United Nations predicted that, for the first time in 30 years, global poverty is set to rise again. The impact of this will also be felt in the Netherlands. As we pursue our ambitions for a climate-neutral economy, this poverty challenge demands that we take a broad view of energy transition and the end user.”
Mariëlle Feenstra (Behavioural, Management and Social Sciences) is co-author of the first two EU Commission reports on gender and energy transition and co-author of the TNO White Paper on Energy Poverty in the Netherlands. “We need to look beyond the front door, at the composition of families and the male-female ratio of energy consumers to make sure that everyone can participate in the energy transition and improve the well-being of households in poverty.” To find out more, go to www.energyfeminist.org