Energy is not a resource like any other. More than ever, it is the central resource for participating in modern life. However, people who are affected by energy poverty can only use basic energy services such as electricity, heat or hot water to a limited extent or not at all. This already massively affects them in their current everyday life, but in view of the upcoming energy transition and climate change, this will become an even greater challenge for these households.
The Austrian Chamber of Labour therefore calls for the establishment of an Energy and Climate Aid Fund. This fund should support energy-poor households
- in paying their energy bills in the short term,
- ensure an affordable and continuous energy supply in the medium term,
- and enable households with the lowest incomes to participate in a climate-neutral future in the long term, thus combating energy poverty in a sustainable way.
The European Commission has been demanding similar measures from the member states for a long time, and recently again in the revised Energy Efficiency Directive as part of the "Fit for 55" package. In there, the Commission recommends that member states set up national experts networks. The Energy and Climate Aid Fund proposed by the Austrian Chamber of Labour has exactly this task and should therefore be implemented quickly.