Portsmouth City Council has received funding to help 4,000 of its residents get out of fuel poverty.
The 170,000 grant comes from the charity the Environment Centre as part of its Energy Redress Scheme and is the latest in 7.4m of grants awarded to the council over the last two years to tackle fuel poverty and provide energy efficiency initiatives to residents.
Fuel poverty is a major issue in the city as around 12% of households cannot afford to keep their homes adequately warm, compared with the national average rate of 10.9%.
The grant will allow the council to reach out to vulnerable and disadvantaged communities to reduce their risk of fuel poverty and support them to stay warm and well in their homes.
It will also enable fuel-poor households to receive an in-depth and extended home-visit service, covering free fuel top-ups to a dedicated energy advice phone line. This builds on the existing support that includes free LED light bulbs and money advice consultations.
Cllr Darren Sanders, the council’s cabinet member for housing said: ‘Too often, people do not know where to turn or what to do when it comes to cutting fuel bills. This funding from the Environment Centre helps deal with this vital gap.
‘I am keen to make sure the council and other agencies in the city work together to enable all homes in the city to be as energy-efficient as possible.’
Adam Goulden, chief executive of the Environment Centre said: ‘We are delighted to have been awarded funding through the Redress Scheme and are looking forward to supporting Portsmouth City Council and the Fuel Poverty Action group as they work to tackle this hugely important issue.
‘We welcome the opportunity to be able to provide more intensive support to a greater number of vulnerable residents and help them stay warm and well in the homes.’
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