SINePost newsletter - June 2021
In this issue:
- Greenhouse gas emissions estimates
- Fuel poverty estimates
- Latest population estimates
- Universal Credit claimants
- Healthy life expectancy at birth
- Coroners statistics
- Armed Forces Continuous Attitude Survey
- Car Driving Test Statistics
1. Greenhouse gas emission estimates
Carbon dioxide emissions in Somerset fell for the 7th straight year according to annual estimates from the Department for Business, Energy, and Industrial Strategy for the year 2019.
Overall carbon dioxide emissions in Somerset have decreased by 35% since 2005, mirroring national trends. The latest annual fall is largely attributable to declining electricity usage across industrial, commercial, and domestic settings. 2019 also saw a decline in transport related carbon dioxide emissions, the second consecutive annual fall after 3 years of rising transport emissions.
Around 44% of carbon dioxide emissions in Somerset in 2019 were related to transport, 25% to industry and commerce, and 23% to domestic energy use.
The full dataset with county and district level data can be downloaded from: https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/uk-local-authority-and-regional-carbon-dioxide-emissions
2. Fuel poverty estimates
The number of Somerset households living in fuel poverty has increased according to the latest estimates from the Department for Business, Energy, and Industrial Strategy. The estimate of 27,020 fuel-poor households for 2019 represents an increase of 2,885 from the previous year’s figure and is a rate of 10.8% of all households. Rates of fuel poverty in Somerset are below the national rate of 13.4% of households but marginally above the South West regional figure of 10.6%.
A household is considered to be fuel poor if:
• they have required fuel costs that are above average (the national median level)
• were they to spend that amount, they would be left with a residual income below the official poverty line.
Within Somerset, South Somerset district was estimated to have the highest rate of fuel poverty with 11% of household, whereas Mendip was the lowest with 10.4% of households. In previous years, West Somerset district regularly had the highest rates of fuel poverty within Somerset and Taunton Deane had the lowest rates. The combined Somerset West and Taunton district masks these variations with a rate of 10.7%.
Rates of fuel poverty vary considerably at local level, with the highest rates of fuel poverty found in areas of deprivation and in rural areas. The 2019 estimates show 3 neighbourhoods in Somerset with a rate of fuel poverty greater than 20%: Roman Road and Lambrook areas of Taunton, and Bridgwater Hamp East.
For the full dataset, see:https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/sub-regional-fuel-poverty-data-2021
3. Latest Population Estimates
Somerset’s population has increased by 1,700 to 563,900 according to the latest estimates from the Office for National Statistics. The ‘mid-year estimate’ represents an estimate of the population on 30th June 2020.
The annual percentage increase of 0.3% was below both the South West rate (0.6% increase) and the national rate (0.4%) and represents the lowest rate of increase since 2009.
At district level, Mendip saw the biggest increase (up 0.6% to 116,300) , whilst Somerset West & Taunton increased 0.2% to 155,400, Sedgemoor increased 0.2% to 123,400, and South Somerset increased 0.2% to 168,700.
Data can be explored at Local Authority level here:
4. Universal Credit claimants
The latest Universal Credit claimant count for May 2021 shows a total of 14,200 claimants in Somerset. This is a decrease of 985 (6.5%) from the previous month and is the lowest figure since April 2020, although it remains nearly double the pre-pandemic figure of 7,370 from March 2020. National and regional claimant numbers also dropped in the latest month, although the claimant rate in Somerset remains below both the national and regional figures.
For the full dataset, see:
5. Healthy life expectancy at birth
Public Health England has updated its Public Health Outcomes Framework (PHOF) with newly available data on healthy life expectancy at birth covering the period 2017-2019. For babies born in Somerset healthy life expectancy has dropped to 62.8 years for males and 64 years for females. Both figures are the lowest on record and the figure for males is the sixth consecutive annual decrease. The decrease for males puts Somerset below the national figure for England for the first time since records began in 2009.
Healthy life expectancy shows the years a person can expect to live in good health (rather than with a disability or in poor health).
The PHOF data is available as an interactive tool at:
6. Coroners statistics
A total of 2,185 deaths were reported to the coroner in Somerset in 2020, a decrease of 13.5% compared to 2019, according to figures published by the Ministry of Justice (MoJ). Nationally there was a 3% decrease in deaths reported to coroners.
A total of 332 inquests were opened in Somerset in 2020, 16% more than in 2019. The national figure was up 7% compare to 2019. Male deaths accounted for 60% of all inquests opened. Industrial disease and drug or alcohol related deaths had the highest ratio of males to females (both at 85% male) followed by suicide (73% male).
For the full dataset, see: https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/coroners-statistics-2020
7. Armed Forces Continuous Attitude Survey Results
Latest annual results of the Armed Forces Continuous Attitude Survey have been released by the Ministry of Defence, monitoring the views of armed forces personnel in areas such as childcare, employment, family life, accommodation, and the Armed Forces Covenant.
Findings from the latest survey include:
• 77% of armed forces personnel have heard of the Armed Forces Covenant
• Less than 40% of agree that members of the Armed Forces are valued by society.
• 49% of service personnel are married and a further 24% are in long-term relationships.
• 51% have children they support financially.
For the full dataset, see: https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/armed-forces-continuous-attitude-survey-2021
8. Car Driving Test statistics
The number of practical car driving tests conducted in Somerset in 2020/21 was over 70% lower than the previous year according to figures released by the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA). In 2020/21 there were 3,257 tests conducted, compared to 11,398 over the previous year.
Pass rates for practical car driving tests in Somerset increased year on year and remain well above the national average, with pass rates of 66.6% at the Yeovil test centre and 60.7 at the Taunton test centre. The overall national pass rate was 49.8%.
The pass rate for males remains higher than for females. Pass rates for males were 68.5% at Yeovil and 62.4 at Taunton, compared to rates for females of 64.9% at Yeovil and 59.1% at Taunton.
For the full dataset, see: https://www.gov.uk/government/statistical-data-sets/car-driving-test-data-by-test-centre /
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