Okay, I thought I would take the time to write about something that has been bugging me for ages.


Well to be more precise, pollution and what we can do about it.

You see where I live in Storrington in southern England, we have a bit of an issue with pollution levels. There are various factors at play, including high levels of traffic, congestion and geographical effects. It is so bad that when the BBC covered the Defra warning of ‘very high’ air pollution across England, Storrington even got a mention.

Now we have all heard about renewable energy and green technologies like electric vehicles (EVs), but one major stumbling block for many is the cost. To buy an EV is expensive. On top of that people still have a mistrust of the battery technology and the range of the vehicles.

No, I am not going to start lecturing about EV range and the average distance driven by UK drivers, or charging facilities or any of that. If you want to find out about that yourself you can. There are loads of articles and videos about the subject.

Anyway, moving on. The real issue for many, as I said, is the cost.

It turns out there is a blatantly obvious and simple thing we can all do. Switch to a green energy supplier!

Seriously, we live in a capitalist economy and market forces are a powerful thing. If everyone started switching to a green energy supplier, the power companies that still relied on burning fossil fuels would soon catch on, or they would die out. It’s that simple.

Do you remember this uSwitch advert with Phil Glenister? It highlights how easy it is to switch energy provider. In fact, if you don’t want to go through uSwitch it’s still easy. All you have to do is sign up with your new provider and they handle the rest. You don’t need to go through some complicated rigmarole with your old provider.

That’s what I did. I picked an energy provider based on two things. 1) Was it green? 2) Was it cheaper?

That brings me to another point. Just because an energy company only uses renewable sources, does not mean it is more expensive. Especially when the big energy companies start arbitrarily raising prices for no good reason at all, like Npower’s massive 15% rise in electricity. I ended up switching our gas and electricity to Ecotricity, which worked out at about a £300 saving per year compared with our last supplier. On top of that, if we had an EV we’d get another £40 knocked off, plus access to one of the largest charging networks in the country for free.

Ecotricity also have a plan to generate gas from grass and are applying to build plants wherever there is a fracking application. I hope they succeed.

It’s not just Ecotricity that are 100% renewable, there are other green suppliers out there too like Good Energy and  Green Energy. We can all help reduce the toxic emissions in our country just by switching to a cleaner energy provider.

So in the words of Phil Glenister, what are you waiting for? Go on!

Published by Alan Stainer

After more than a decade as a Lotus Domino admin, Alan set up Alan's IT Solutions. A local business servicing the IT needs of SMEs and domestic clients in the south of England. The creative freedom of running a business led to the creation of Local Hive. A web based project aimed at raising the visibility of small businesses in their local communities, by creating a virtual high street. Alan also writes a column for the West Sussex County Times, giving people practical advice on computing.

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  1. Hi, thanks for the article !
    I’ve changed to a green energy provider too, 10 months ago. It’s in France and the provider’s name is Enercoop. For those who think green energy is still expensive, here is what I can say after almost a year on the green side.

    I paid 46€ a month at EDF, with often a bigger bill at the end of the year.
    Currently, at Enercoop since 8 months :
    31/12/2016 91,28 €
    31/10/2016 107,77 €
    31/08/2016 67,82 €
    30/06/2016 92,93 €

    As you can see, it is for 2 months.
    The average, per month is 44.98€

    So, what are you waiting for ?
    For people in France: http://www.enercoop.fr/

    1. Thanks Audric. I am glad you shared that information, as switching to a green supplier is definitely not confined to the UK only. Good to know you are making some savings too!

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