Energy Poverty and Energy Communities' status
In Hungary, domestic energy policy is mostly focused on general price control of electricity, gas and district heating. Improvement of energy efficiency in buildings is supported through a loan program and a non-refundable, postfinancing scheme, with ad-hoc calls. Housing subsidy for low-income households can be provided by municipalities.
According to relevant studies published by Energiaklub in 2012 and 2014, the average Hungarian household spends ~15-20% of their total income on energy costs. However, due to the different definitions, it is quite difficult to define the exact number of those who really live in energy poverty in Hungary.
In 2019 an energy poverty-related study was published by the Technical University of Budapest (BME), based on a survey of the Hungarian Central Statistical Office. The representative database contains information about 7,000 households from 2016. According to the results of BME’s research, the number of energy-poor households varies between 300,000 and 1,000,000 in the country, depending on which energy poverty definitions or factors were considered. To define a single value, a standard definition was created. According to this, 13,67% of the Hungarian households (550,000 homes) struggled with energy poverty. The study estimates that 16,6% of them live in Budapest which means at least 90,000 families i.e. approximately 250-300,000 people live there under the energy poverty threshold.
Despite of the Hungarian energy prices are one of the lowest in the EU and winter are getting more and more mild, the heating season still puts extremely big pressure for low-income households especially for those who live in inefficient, old buildings.
The most vulnerable groups are single elderly people, unemployed people, large families and single-parent families. As rural, especially small settlements are economically disadvantaged and family houses are on average larger than condominiums - resulting in higher overheads - energy poverty is a major problem here.
At a glance
Energy Supporters and Mentors in Hungary
POWERPOOR provides to everyone who is interested in alleviating energy poverty the opportunity to become an Energy Supporter and Mentor by taking part in training sessions. The content of the trainings is available in the POWERPOOR Online Trainer Library along with other interesting energy poverty related materials. There are various trainings taking place in the 8 pilot countries and in an EU level. Follow us on social media to find out more about the upcoming ones.
5 trainings have taken place in Hungary. 97 people got trained and 74 of them followed the certification process and became POWERPOOR Energy Supporters or Mentors. You can find all the POWERPOOR certified Energy Supporters and Mentors here.
Energy Poverty Alleviation Offices in Hungary
In Hungary, 1 Energy Poverty Alleviation Office has been establishedin Józsefváros. The role of energy poverty alleviation offices can be found here.
Other municipalities within the POWERPOOR network
In Hungary 3 districts and 2 municipalities are engaged representing 293 thousand people. The three districts are Józsefváros (8th district of Budapest), Ferencváros (9th district of Budapest) and Terézváros (VI. District of Budapest), and the two municipalites are Nyíregyháza (Capital of Szabolcs-Szatmár-Bereg County), and Bükkszentkereszt.
For more information on POWEPROOR activities in Hungary follow our local partner Energiaklub.