Renewable Energy

Renewable energy doesn’t have to mean getting solar panels on your roof, choosing a green tariff is a great starting point. These are no longer more expensive than a standard tariff.

In addition how we travel has a big impact on climate change and there are some changes we can make to how we use our cars and air travel that can have a positive impact.

Switch your home to Clean Renewable Energy

The UK’s greenhouse gas emissions have decreased by 43% since the 1990s, mainly due to the switch from coal to renewable energy in industry. Residential use by households has decreased by 16% over the same period, and now contributes about 18% of our total emissions (excluding travel).

But there are some areas which are showing alarming rises.  The UK government is likely to miss its legally binding target of a further 31% reduction by 2030.  It is on course for just a 10% reduction.  But as domestic use and travel accounts for 35% of the UK’s CO2,  there is a lot that all of us can do to help.

You can switch to a 100% clean energy company or choose to switch to a green tariff with your existing company which invests in energy produced from water, wind or sun.  You may save money, but you’ll be reducing pollution and CO2 emissions, and keeping fossil fuel in the ground, so you’re helping to fight climate change.  And by changing to renewable energy, you’re helping the British Clean energy industry to invest more in renewables.

Generating Green Energy

You now have an option to generate your own green electricity in the home, and get paid to supply it back to the grid. The Energy Saving Trust has great advice on the different types of energy that are right for you.

  • Renewable electricity can come from solar panel, hydro power, wind turbines, and new micro-CHP. It’s essential to have a good battery store if you are generating electricity in this way.
  • You can generate heat from air source or ground source heat pumps, biomass boilers, or solar panels. Again, you’ll need a god thermal store such as an immersion or storage heaters to regulate use.

Help grow Community Energy in your area

We know that generating electricity from renewable sources is vital to reduce our use of fossil fuels and as we move away from oil and gas we need to increase our electricity supply significantly.

Community Energy are local schemes which benefit both the individuals who invest and the community, through local democratic involvement and funding for community projects. In Horsham District, we have established Community Energy Horsham to help bring community solar energy projects to our district.

We are seeking non-domestic roofs – e.g. on churches, public buildings, care homes, industrial buildings – where the owners or tenants could use home generated electricity (cheaper than the grid). If you can recommend a building or for more information, please email or click on the link below.

community energy

Reducing your car’s carbon footprint

Nearly half of our domestic emissions come from car transport. Here are some tips to reduce your transport’s carbon footprint.

  • Drive less, drive outside peak times, use public transport, or car share.
  • Drive steady, don’t brake or accelerate, and keep to the speed limit. It’ll reduce your fuel mileage by 33%.
  • Maintain your car and keep tyres fully inflated, and replace air, oil and fuel filters. It’ll save up to 40% on fuel.

Electric Cars

  • Consider moving to an electric vehicle, but do your homework and get one that is right for you.
  • Fill your electric car with ‘green’ electric energy by switching to a green provider using BigCleanSwitch.  There’s no point in running it on electricity from fossil fuels. 
  • If you own a hybrid, make sure you keep the fuel cell topped up, or you’ll be running on petrol most of the time.

Air Travel

Emissions from aviation are a significant contributor to climate change. Aeroplanes burn fossil fuel which not only releases CO2 emissions but also has strong warming non-CO2 effects due to nitrogen oxides (NOx), vapour trails and cloud formation triggered by the altitude at which aircraft operate. These non-CO2 effects contribute twice as much to global warming as aircraft CO2 and were responsible for two-thirds of aviation’s climate impact in 2018.

There are a few things you can do:

  • Don’t fly!  If a meeting can be done online, you’ll save time and money. And have a staycation.
  • Travel light. You’ll have lower carbon emissions if you don’t add to an aircraft’s weight
  • Use a carbon calculator and offset your carbon footprint when you fly, including your road travel
  • Use your local airport to cut down on road miles, and fly direct where possible
  • Choose your airline carefully. Some airlines, such as EasyJet, have newer planes and optimize passenger capacity, so they score highly.  Those with older planes and business and first class, such as British Airways, score lower.
Air Travel

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