Anthony Hilbert

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Energy poverty, the condition of households that cannot adequately heat their homes, is a chronic problem resulting from low income, high fuel prices, and poorly insulated, energy inefficient houses. In addition to financial strain, energy poverty causes severe social and health problems for people living in under-heated homes (Boardman 1991; 2013). Despite its seriousness and pervasiveness, energy poverty has been ignored too often in the US. Those that suffer through energy poverty each year, trapped in bitterly cold homes and facing exorbitant fuel bills, have only rarely organized effectively to demand necessary changes, making the case of People United for Sustainable Housing (PUSH) so significant. Through community organizing, advocacy, and protest, PUSH catalyzed unprecedented shifts in the distribution of energy conservation funding in Western New York, ensuring that a greater share went toward low-income households for weatherization.