Inequality and Energy: How Extremes of Wealth and Poverty in High Income Countries Affect CO2 Emissions and Access to Energy challenges energy consumption researchers in developed countries to reorient their research frameworks to include the effects of economic inequality within the scope of their investigations, and calls for a new set of paradigms for energy consumption research. The book explores concrete examples of energy deprivation due to inequality, and provides conceptual tools to explore this in relation to other issues regarding energy consumption. It thereby urges that energy consumption approaches be updated for a world of increasing inequality.
Extreme economic inequality has increased within developed countries over the past three decades. The effects of inequality are now seen increasingly in health, housing affordability, crime and social cohesion. There are signs it may even threaten democracy. Researchers are also exploring its effects on energy consumption. One of their key findings is that less privileged groups have lost consistent access to basic energy services like warm homes and affordable transport, leading to huge disparities of climate damaging emissions between rich and poor.