According to EU Labor Commissioner Nicolas Schmit, the number of individuals unable to heat their houses this winter is anticipated to grow. Heating expenses are skyrocketing due to rising global energy prices.
The European Union’s Labor Commissioner, Nicolas Schmit, warned on Sunday that the steep spike in energy prices will lead to an increase in so-called energy poverty in Europe this winter.
He told Germany’s DPA news agency that millions of people in Europe are currently unable to adequately heat winter homes, and that this figure “may increase further.”
While the European Commission can assist EU nations in limiting the impact of rising energy prices on the general population, Schmit believes it is ultimately up to national governments to act.
When members of a household cannot afford to keep their home properly warm at a fair cost, they are considered to be in fuel or energy poverty.
The European Trade Union Confederation (ETUC) warned in September that more than 2.7 million people in Europe, despite having employment, couldn’t afford to keep their houses warm.
Germany cut its renewable energy tariff by a third last week. The tax accounts for one-fifth of all electricity bills in Germany.
Low-income households in France will get €100 ($116) to help with the increased expense of heating their home.
Prices are rising due to the economic recovery.
In recent weeks, global natural gas and coal prices have reached new highs, while the price of oil has risen to more than $80 per barrel.
The price increases have been attributed to the worldwide economic recovery following the COVID-19 epidemic, since demand for electricity to power industry is generating global supply shortages.
Russia, which supplies nearly half of the EU’s natural gas imports, has been accused by certain lawmakers.
Russia’s gas supply dropped during the epidemic and has since recovered, but it is still insufficient to satisfy the increased demand.
There is speculation that Moscow is withholding more exports to put pressure on Germany to legally commission the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline, which was finished last month.
The pipeline’s development has been criticized as putting Europe in danger of becoming overly reliant on Russian gas.
The EU has previously stated that it believes the recent increase in energy prices is only transitory and will subside in the spring.