Addressing Energy Poverty in British Columbia’s Rural and Indigenous Communities

Rural and indigenous communities in Canada experience energy poverty due to poor quality housing, lower incomes, high fuel costs, limited access to natural gas, and in some cases no access to grid electricity. Ecotrust Canada’s Community Energy Initiative seeks to address Energy Poverty by improving access to affordable heat in rural and indigenous communities across Canada. Residential heating constitutes majority of energy costs for Canadian households, and so, heating system retrofits are a compelling opportunity to address high energy costs. We will assess opportunities for rural indigenous communities in British Columbia to reduce heating costs by analyzing a range of alternatives including pellet stoves, high-efficiency heat pumps, building envelop retrofits, and natural gas connections close to existing pipeline. Through this, we attempt to design policy recommendations and pricing structures to better support delivery of affordable heat in rural and indigenous communities across British Columbia.

Faculty Supervisor:

Milind Kandlikar


Rudri Bhatt


Ecotrust Canada


Environmental sciences




University of British Columbia



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