The combination of spending more time at home, as well as loss of income for many households, and the increased Winter Energy Payment for 2020 may have altered previous energy use behaviours and energy poverty rates in New Zealand in complicated ways. It is important to understand these changes to better inform the policy response and medium-term recovery to support New Zealand households.

Specific objectives of the research are to:

  1. Assess changes in household energy use during COVID-19 restrictions;
  2. Explore the extent to which these changes in household energy use may be continued once COVID-19 restrictions are lifted;
  3. Explore the impact of COVID-19 restrictions on energy poverty.

To meet these objectives, we’re conducting a mixed-methods research project that includes:

  1. An online survey;
  2. A qualitative interview study;
  3. Comparison of electricity use records during periods of COVID-19 restrictions with the same periods one year prior.

Can you help? We’d like to hear from anyone over 18 who was in New Zealand during COVID-19 Level 4 in March-April 2020. Please complete this survey and share it widely 

This research was funded by the University of Otago. 

If you have any questions about this research, please contact Kimberley O'Sullivan