Impact of energy prices on energy poverty, gender equality and RHC opportunities for mitigation

On 18th January 2023, Women Engage for a Common Future (WECF) presented the first webinar of the new webinar series for capacity building on gender mainstreaming and women empowerment in the renewable heating and cooling sector (RHC). The exploding energy prices and their impact led us to talk about this topic in the webinar. Hence, it was essential to consider the vulnerable groups to the crisis. Our three inspiring speakers, Louise Sunderland (RAP), Simone Meerman (WECF) and Katharina Habersbruner (WECF), complemented the topic with their knowledge. Webinar n°6 focused on understanding how energy poverty and invisible energy poverty impact low-income households and gender and, more importantly, the mitigation strategies for the RHC sector.

Louise Sunderland, a senior advisor for the Regulatory Assistance Project (RAP), kicked off the webinar by presenting her recent publication 'Taking the burn out of heating for low-income households'. She talked about affordable heating technologies and what the EU is doing to make them more affordable and accessible. Louise shared the status of the 2030 goal of phasing out fossil fuels economics of switching to clean heating solutions, e.g. heat pumps. She topographically compared the energy prices pre-crisis and post-crisis. With the focus on having more affordable clean heat that can help to reduce the energy upfront and running costs, Louise shared some strategies (e.g. subsidies, energy efficiency, etc.).

WECF continued the webinar by talking about the three pillars of energy poverty, gender dimensions and the concept of invisible energy poverty. In the following session, WECF shared mitigation strategies to reduce the burden of energy costs (e.g. collective assemblies, energy communities, subsidies, etc.). In the next segment, the participants were grouped in two breakout sessions to work on one of the two highest-voted mitigation strategies: energy communities and women as agents of change in this webinar. During the breakout session, the participants brainstormed ideas to implement the mitigation strategies. Later in the plenary, both groups shared a summary of their discussion session.  

Hence, it was established again that women play a vital role in bringing change. Therefore, women are the agents of change to achieve the fossil phase-out by 2030 and push and achieve the much-awaited energy transition. 

Watch the recording here.

We are looking forward to a very interesting and successful webinar series. We want to thank everyone for participating. We hope to welcome you again for our next webinar on 'Added value of women in innovation in RHC & RES', organised by ECWT.

To have more information on our webinars, you can follow this link: https://w4res.eu/w4res-new-webinar-series/

Find below the complete program:

  • Webinar n°7 - Added value of women in innovation in RHC & RES – 22nd February 2023 (ECWT)
  • Webinar n°8 - Diversity recruitment strategies – 22nd March 2023 (WECF)
  • Webinar n°9 - SINTEF - RHC - DEIS - The Norwegian Perspective – 19th April 2023 (ECWT)
  • Webinar n°10 - RHC - RES - DEIS The Nordic Outlook – 24th May 2023 (ECWT) 

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