The Commission for Rural Communities (CRC) has said that not enough of the Warm Front scheme is helping rural homeowners tackle high prices from energy suppliers.
While figures from the Public Accounts Committee show that the majority of homeowners who benefit from the scheme are not actually in fuel poverty, only 15 per cent of eligible rural residents receive it.
The CRC has called on the government to introduce specific social tariffs for rural communities as these homeowners often have to use more expensive fuels like domestic heating oil and so they fail to qualify for the cheaper deals available in urban areas.
Crispin Moor, executive director at the CRC, said: "The situation is very concerning. We fully support the (Public Accounts) Committee's recommendation that the targeting of Warm Front is improved to reach more of those in fuel poverty."
He also called on the government to make domestic efficiency measures more readily available to rural residents under the Warm Front initiative.
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