With gas and electricity soaring due to the ongoing oil situation, it was important to find green electricity and gas at a reasonable rate.
I had a good root through The Green Energy Marketplace and Npower Juice came up the best (well, cheapest, it's probably not actually the greenest) in the Amber Valley, and with the addition of gas it cuts the bill by £60 pa on top of the general saving.
With Juice you don't pay any premium and for every customer who signs up they donate £10 a year (up to a maximum of £500,000) to a renewable fund that is used to support new and emerging renewable technology projects.
All the electricity supplied to Juice customters comes from North Hoyle Offshore Wind Farm. Basically, npower matches each unit of electricity used, and feeds the same amount into the network from North Hoyle.
Greenpeace is big on this. It hopes that by people signing up to Juice they will demonstrate the public’s ongoing support for off-shore wind power. Support indeed, when costs, including VAT, based on a medium user (an average house using 3300kWh per year) should only be around £66 (thought gas etc. is rocketing up by the day) per quarter.
It's paranoid, maybe, but Andromeda has taught me a bit about alternative power, and (come the great wave) I want to have alternatives in place. The oil is on it's last legs, gas is too expensive (and will be coming in from Norway in a couple of years so god knows what supply will be like and which nutters will be trying to blow up the pipelines and stuff) and gas is always linked to the oil price (as is electricity).
In an ideal world it’s an Aga-Rayburn, or equivalent, but that’s out of our price range for the next few years so I’ll just have to settle with replacing the gas fire in the lounge for solid fuel. I’ll pick their brains next time we’re up at CAT to see if there’s much else we can do immediately for zero gil. Being a listed building, it's not like we can just whack a load of photovoltaic stuff all over the roof like we started on Andromeda.
Obvious general stuff like 'energy saver bulbs' (should be a laugh with the dimmers in every room) and shed loads of insulation (the loft is a priority) have got to be a good start once we’re in.
It's a whole different kettle of fish to the boat.