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Another cold winter on the cards for struggling Kiwis

Community Energy Network - MEDIA RELEASE for immediate release

Another cold winter on the cards for struggling Kiwis

Early results from a household survey being conducted by Community Energy Network (CEN) and ActionStation.org.nz are highlighting the widespread prevalence of fuel poverty in New Zealand. The survey as part of the www.warmerwinters.org.nz campaign, is gathering first-hand experiences of Kiwis living in cold homes and the resultant health issues from these conditions.

The campaign, launched in late 2012, has as its aim to call for national Minimum Energy Performance Standards for all homes and more especially rental properties. Fuel Poverty is usually recognised as an ‘inability to afford to heat a home’ which comes about through a combination of low quality housing, low incomes and increasing energy prices. These conditions combined contribute to a host of poor social and health outcomes.

Jo Wills, Executive Officer of CEN says; ‘we are encouraging as many households as possible to go online and fill out the survey on our website www.warmerwinters.org.nz. In doing this are asking Kiwis to join us in saying we don’t think fuel poverty is acceptable and New Zealand’s standard of housing needs to improve.”

Jo says that CEN member organizations throughout New Zealand will also be distributing hardcopy surveys to homes and organizations in their areas. The campaign will run through to late 2013, with hard copy surveys also available at supporting health and social agencies. Homeowners and tenants are encouraged to take the survey.

A hui is planned for late September 2013 to present the data collected from the surveys. The hui will examine the case for Minimum Energy Performance Standards for rental properties in time for getting the issue onto politicians’ agendas for the 2014 National Election. The hui will be open to communities, industry, media as well as local and central government.

- ENDS –

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