Switch to a 100% Renewable Energy Supplier

Alternative_Energies

Sometimes making a small change can significantly help the planet, but it can also save us money. What I found surprising when looking into changing energy providers to one that would be 100% renewable, is that price comparison websites said it would save me up to £300 a year compared to my current provider. Looking into both tariffs, the rates were definitely lower from the green energy company, but I remain skeptical on it saving me that much. I will let you know in a year! Either way, it’s cheaper, and it’s better for the planet, so it’s a no brainer.

I used this website to compare the different renewable energy providers in my area greenelectricity.org . In the end I went for Bulb, and through their website it only took 10 minutes to switch.

Green energy is electricity that comes from renewable sources, that don’t contribute to global warming. It can come from wind farms or solar panels, hydro power, wave power, tidal power and more. And Bulb get most of theirs from UK providers. Energy that travels less is even better. 

And more good news, the government is changing rules over the next few years which will not only help save energy overall, but give people more potential to make money from energy they produce. On BBC news last week they reported “New rules will make it easier for people to generate their own power with solar panels, store it in batteries and sell it to the National Grid.” Wonderful.

 

Eco labels

EcoLabels
Some labels to lookout for 

One easy way to make a difference to the environment is in the choices we make as consumers. I’ve noticed over the past few year that more and more products are certified by eco friendly labels. But it’s not easy to make environmentally conscious decisions when you don’t know what you’re supposed to be looking out for.

Apart from the lack of awareness, I suspect one of the main reasons for people not purchasing products supporting these labels is down to cost. It is true that eco products can be more expensive, but not always. For example Sainsbury’s own tuna which has the MSC label, is cheaper than John West which doesn’t (and to me, tastes the same).

Above are some of the labels worth looking out for, and here is what they mean. If you have other favourites, please share!

An MSC (Marine Stewardship Council) blue tick on fish you buy means that it can be traced all the way back to the MSC certified fishery it came from. So you can eat your fish knowing that you are not endangering that species. You can find MSC fish in most big supermarkets now, and a lot of restaurants and fish and chip shops are getting on board too. Check menus for the blue tick!

The FSC (Forest Stewardship Council) label will be on certified wood and paper products (like pencils and notebooks). Anything you buy with this label guarantees that the tree cut down for it is being replaced.

Soil Association certifies that the product is organic. It can be found on a variety of products including food, beauty and textiles. I see it most frequently on food (like a loaf of bread or fruit).

EU Ecolabel indicates that what you are buying is environmentally friendly. The whole life cycle of the product is taken into account, from sourcing raw materials to recycling. This label can be found on cleaning products, furniture or even footwear.

The Rainforest Alliance label lets you know that the food or beverage you are consuming comes from farms where the staff work in safe conditions and the wildlife and waterways are protected.