Posts Tagged electricity

Are friends electric? No but cars are…

 

Well, today’s the day. It might even go down in history. The first mass market electric car has hit or shores.

Be excited, be very excited – this is the start of an automotive revolution. No question about that. We may once have predicted or fantasised a 2011 where we all went about on jetpacks or personal hovercraft, but realistically the electric car is more useful than either of those.

One day it may be that cars run on water but for the time being zero tailgate emission electric cars are gonna rule.

Scottish power gas (I mean electricity and north sea gas, not petrol obvs) companies who offer their customers smart meters or monitors are likely to see some changes in household energy use as the car gets plugged in at night. It will be a whole new world.

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greener (cheaper) power

How much can you realistically save on your utility bills?

It’s always worth thinking about – cos it all adds up. You don’t need to be a money saving expert to do this. Just do a quick Google search for stuff like ‘saving electricity’ or ‘saving energy’ and there are plenty of sites with a lot of good information on them about keeping your use of energy to a good budget level. Lights, television, washing machine, kettle, shower, bath – all of these are necessities in the modern world, and all of them are areas where savings can be made. And then of course there is the environment, which benefits too.

Ensuring your energy use is kept in check leads to cheaper electricity and gas bills, and in this time of recession, we need all the savings we can get.

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Electrifying the UK – electric plug in points

BBC (and others) report this week on how Manchester is to lead the way in electric plug-in points for the new wave of electric vehicles set to hit the roads in 2011.

According to Manchester Confidential, the plug-in points won’t just be confined to the city either, with some of them being planned for outlying areas such as Oldham and Stockport.

I think we need to think up a better name than “plug-in point” though, so here are my suggestions for an alternative:

Juicebox
Car-go

Err, I give up: any suggestions?

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Tendering for Energy in the UK

UK Tender Negotiating Issues

Energy Tendering Process

Energy Tendering Process

Over the last couple of years the dramatic inflation of wholesale UK energy prices is making businesses re-evaluate their latest procurement arrangements. With the uncertainty in the global market and economy the energy companies are taking a step into the unknown in regards to gauging future gas and electricity tendering energy procurement contracts.

The market:

It has been widely reported that more than halve of all energy companies are paying over the odds for their utilities due to many reasons, One of the major scenarios of this is because there is no certainty about costs, contracts and price formatting from major suppliers. Another reason as to why various businesses are paying over the odds is due to the confusion of supply contracts being terminated. This results in companies having to pay excessive charges.

Once again companies will have to rely on the government to clarify what’s what when it comes to negotiating energy supplies into the UK from foreign countries.

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Ecotricity Award

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Europe’s largest ever green electricity business “Ecotricity” has won a well deserved environmental achievement award.  The company set up in 1996 in Gloucestershire founded the green electricity market. Firstly set up to provide market places with environmental friendly electricity by Dale Vince.

Later on in 2009 Ecotricity will be rolled out to domestic customers who can join in on the environmentally friendly energy with some such company’s such as Thames Water, The Millennium Dome and The co-Operative bank.

In the last four years Ecotricity has went from a turnover of around £13000 to £50,000,000, most people are led to believe that many green electricity products and services are more costly and in many cases they are, but here at Ecotricity we succeed in challenging this issue.

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UK Green Power Expansion

The UK government have finally announced the details of their commitment to renewable energy. Whether or not these targets are attainable is another matter. However, from our point of view, any focus at all on this issue is to be welcomed. If this can be the start of the green energy revolution then hopefully in the future we will power our homes with cheap electricity and gas from clean sources.

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You don’t get power much greener than this

Waitrose supermarket in Rickmansworth are using tomatoes to generate power for their store.

I will just direct you to the article itself but I thought this was amazing!

It will help reduce the amount of hydro and wind power stations if it can be managed on a large scale!

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Blocked: Isle of Lewis Wind Farm

Local people pressure executive to say no

Today BBC1 news announced that the Scottish Executive2 plan to block the Isle of
Lewis wind farm proposal.

The Scottish Executive bowed to mounting pressure from the local people of Lewis and will block the planning application for the wind turbines. Residents of Lewis complained that the turbines would affect tourism and damage the wild life of Lewis, Lewis is home to Scotland’s largest population of birds.

The future of renewable energy in Scotland

What does this mean for the future of green energy in Scotland? It will become more difficult for energy companies to set up renewable energy sources in Scotland, future coastal wind farms can be blocked on the grounds of that it is an eyesore. Wind farms are not the best looking thing to have dotted across your coast however it is a trade off with cleaner full. I am sure most, when looking at the bigger picture, would agree that it is fair sacrifice to lose untainted coast lines in order to help preserve the environment as a whole; it is that or lose the coastlines altogether.

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The new EU energy plan of action

How will the new EU energy plan affect the UK

The European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso revealed his plan of action to reduce the EU’s selling the plan as “the first economy for the low-carbon age”. Barroso wants the whole of the EU to reduce its green house gas by 20% by 2020.

Wind

What does this mean for Britain, well first things first we would need to decide on what methods we would use to help bring down the countries green house gas. Being an island the UK’s first choice of renewable energies would be wind. Business Secretary John Hutton announced that UK government wanted to see enough offshore wind farms to power the all UK homes. Obviously this will lead to a slight decline in the quality of our seaside views but think of the good it will do for the environment as a whole. There are already some companies offering wind powered electricity.

Tidal

Another option the UK has a tidal barrage1, a tidal barrage on the Severn estuary would contribute more that any of the other renewable sources. However this comes with a price, 15 billion pounds! Due to its massive price and the time it takes to set up, I fear that no matter how energy efficient a tidal barrage is, it will always be the last option. However, hydro electricity is being used by some energy providers in the UK.

Biofuel

You will find a brief run down of what biofuel are at wiki2. Basically it is a fuel made from living things or the waste that they produce. This sort of fuel was used in World War II but the cheap price of crude oil caused it to be knocked back to second place. The UK would make it’s biofuel from plants specifically grown for this purpose, e.g. maze. Although biofuels still release CO2, this is counter balanced by the plants absorbing CO2; though you still need to burn fuel to harvest and manufacture the biofuel. Even with the expenditure of fuel to harvest and manufacture biofuel, biofuel is believed to reduce green house gases by 30% – 40%. A downside to biofuel is that it may lead to entire areas of Britain’s countryside being turning into farms for biofuel crops. There are some companies just now who are offering biofuel as an alternative energy3 but not many at the moment.

So what does this mean

Well, I am not sure if you notice from reading this article but no matter what we do to try reduce our greenhouse gases one way or the other we will need to trade off our British landscape for our green goals. In addition to that we will need to pay financially, Barroso believes that it will cost everyone approximately £2.10 per week4 to reach the goals set by the EU, it will be up to the public to decide if that is a fair price for a richer environment.

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