In 2019, 15% of Europeans were living in homes with a leaking roof, damp walls, floors or foundation. Up to 100,000 Europeans die each year as a result of a cold home, and close to 80 million people in the EU were late or unable to pay their utility bills in 2019. These are only a few numbers illustrating the extent to which energy poverty is still a very serious issue in Europe.

#Right2Energy is a proud member of the Right to Energy Coalition. Together, we recognize that energy poverty lies at the intersection of different issues: A warming world that puts people and planet at risk, increasing social inequality, and an unjust energy system. These multiple dimensions call for a holistic approach to tackle the different causes and consequences of energy poverty in a dignified way.


Energy is a basic human right: no one should ever have to choose between eating, lighting or warming one’s home. We aim to listen and raise the voices of Europe’s energy poor to make sure they are heard in the energy discussion.

The Right to Energy Coalition appoints 15th-19th February as European Energy Poverty week. We take this opportunity to draw attention to the issue of energy poverty. We invite activists, social movements, workers and their unions to form coalitions at national and European levels to ensure a fair energy transition for all. We call on all European institutions and national governments to take the bold decisions necessary in this time of crisis.

The Right to Energy Coalition's main goals

  • A ban on disconnections to effectively ensure the right to energy;
  • The supply of a minimum amount of energy for all;
  • A massive renovation programme across the EU to provide decent, efficient housing for all;
  • The targeting of the most vulnerable in these renovation efforts;
  • Recognition of the role of community energy in alleviating energy poverty;
  • Support for community energy projects fighting energy poverty;
  • A European definition of energy poverty to understand and monitor the issue at EU-level

Five community projects in the picture

Regardless of income or home ownership, all citizens should be able to benefit from participating in the energy transition. The ability to invest in energy efficiency or ownership of renewables should not be limited to well-off households with enough disposable income. Yet it is vulnerable consumers and those experiencing energy poverty that can benefit the most from being able to participate. REScoops can further empower vulnerable and low-income households across the EU to be able to share in the benefits of the energy transition. At, we believe that community initiatives form an important part of the answer to energy poverty. The following examples strengthen our case for citizen-led initiatives.

Énergie Solidaire

Énergie Solidaire (France) is a solidarity fund that raises money through micro-donations from energy bills of consumers and energy donations by renewables producers.

The aim of this fund? The support of local social initiatives that are tackling fuel poverty.

Find more information here.

Energy Poverty1

Brixton Energy Solar

The Brixton Energy Solar projects are co-operatively owned renewable energy projects on social housing estates. They allow tenants in social housing to make investments on their roof and give access to part of the electricity produced with solar panels for free. Revenues from the projects feed into an energy efficiency fund and provide training opportunities for youth in the community.

Find more information here.

Energy Poverty2

The HELPS project - Enerterre

The French cooperative Les 7 Vents coordinates the HELPS project - Enerterre, promoting shared and accompanied self-rehabilitation (SASR) practices that enable energy poor households to engage in energy efficiency refurbishments of their homes at a lower cost.

Find more information here.

Energy Poverty3

ZEZ Energy Advisors

ZEZ fights youth unemployment and energy poverty in Croatia with the Energy Advisors programme. The programme aims to improve energy efficiency in energy poor households through the use of tips and energy efficiency measures, carried out by young and long-term unemployed persons qualified as energy efficiency advisors.

Find more information here.

Energy Poverty4

Wijkwerf EnerGent

Cooperative EnerGent (Belgium) supports its members to improve energy efficiency in their homes. Their Wijkwerf project empowers low-income households to measure their energy consumption. It also provides guidance to get subsidies for energy refurbishments.

Find more information here.

Energy Poverty5