Crowdsourcing to Eliminate Energy Poverty

by Alison Kibe

Energy costs make up a disproportionate amount of a low income household spending so energy prices, recently at 3.2% increase per year, create a greater burden on lower incomes (Hodge, 2014). As a result, some households cannot afford to heat or cool their homes without assistance. Under some circumstances, households may even forego energy use in months they need it most. This is not a small issue, with the official poverty rate in 2013 at 14.5%— or about 45.3 million people (U.S. Census Bureau, 2014). Gridmates, a startup founded in 2014, thought of a new platform to reach those in need—through the electricity grid. Continue reading