Equitable low energy future

Our research


Previous low energy scenarios have provided a complete picture of the energy requirements for all households, but these scenarios were not broken down into income groups and did not consider the distributional impacts. This project will combine a novel methodology developed by Owen and Barrett et al. (2020)[i] with specific energy data from the low energy demand scenarios, as a means to assess inequalities associated with different energy futures. In doing so, this project will look to understand the equitable implications of these futures. It will offer direct application to ongoing government analysis and will engage with HM Treasury and the Cabinet Office (who have already applied our methodology to understand the distributional effects of energy / climate policy for the Net Zero Review.) This project will produce targeted resources offering guidance on how to assess distributional impacts and engage with the equitable implications of low energy futures. Consideration will also be given to how equity issues can be further integrated into the national modelling of low energy demand futures.

[i] Owen A., Barrett J. (2020) Reducing inequality resulting from UK low-carbon policy, Climate Policy 20(10) 1193-1208, https://doi.org/10.1080/14693062.2020.17737

Research questions:

  • Which households will be required to change to reduce the UK’s energy demand?
  • Will these reductions have a disproportionately negative effect on low-income households?
  • Will these reductions exacerbate established inequalities?
  • Project team members: