So you thought that energy efficiency is just for saving either money or the environment. A research in Europe has shown that improvements in household energy efficiency can result in improved human health and well being, and avoid premature death.
University of Manchester’s Urban Institute has recently released the results of the COMBI project ('Calculating and Operationalising the Multiple Benefits of Energy Efficiency in Europe', funded by Horizon 2020). This research has shown that energy efficiency improvements in homes in the European Union could prevent up to 27500 premature deaths from indoor cold between now and 2030.
According to the research, the economic value of these changes could be up to €2.5 billion due to premature mortality from an indoor cold, and up to €2.9 billion due to asthma morbidity from indoor dampness.
The research also shows that due to lower use of fossil fuel combustion, an additional 10 805 premature deaths will be avoided due to reduced exposure to particulate matter, while 442 premature deaths due to exposure to ground-level ozone will be prevented. These will account to an economic value of over €500 million up to the year 2030.
The research also has shown that in 2030 energy efficiency measures applied can also have productivity benefit including gaining 4.5 active work days per person per annum and gain 1961 healthy life years per million population per annum. These benefits are due to the improvements to the health levels of the population.
COMBI project uses 21 End-use energy efficiency improvement actions (EEI) to increase energy efficiency. The list includes energy-efficient actions in dwellings, transport, and heavy industries.