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How To Choose The Right Green Electricity Tariff In The Uk - Articles Surfing
Many people are now trying to take action to help protect the environment, including reducing their personal contribution to Climate Change. One of the ways in which almost 200,000 people in the UK are trying to do this is by buying the electricity they use in their home or business from more environmentally friendly sources. And many more may be about to do the same. A poll commissioned by the Observer at the end of 2006 found that 64% of people would consider switching to a green company for their gas and electricity.
However, according to a report published by the National Consumer Council early in 2007, consumers need to watch out when they are signing up for a 'green' electricity tariff. According to their report, many green tariffs are not delivering the environmental benefits that they claim to. As a result, electricity customers may not be making the positive contribution to protecting the environment that they think they are.
This is because large electricity companies are already required by law to generate a certain amount of their power from renewable sources. Many suppliers do little more than re-package these legal obligations and market them as special 'green tariffs'. But by signing up, people are not increasing the amount of electricity generated from renewable sources, and so are not helping to combat Climate Change.
What's more, it is not always easy for consumers to cut through the marketing hype to obtain information about green tariffs, and to work out how much they are contributing to the environment. The National Consumer Council found that there is too little clear and accurate information available on most green tariffs, and it is hard for consumers to compare because it is not in a standard format. With all the complexities around the tariffs it is easy for consumers to be misled by suppliers' claims. They also found that company sales assistants are not always well enough informed to help consumers make a proper decision.
As a first step the National Consumer Council recommends researching on the Internet, on an independent site that isn't linked to any of the supply companies (such as http://www.downwithco2.co.uk ), and can help them decide which tariff to go for. After that they should go through to individual company web-sites, where they can often sign up in a matter of minutes.
Householders should check carefully before they sign up for a new tariff exactly what impact this will have. They should check with the new company if their custom will really mean that extra renewable electricity will be produced, and there will be a real reduction in carbon dioxide emissions.
Although signing up for the right green tariff can have an impact on the greenhouse gas emissions people are responsible for, they should also focus heavily on saving energy, because they can have a far greater impact this way. Simple measures like switching to low energy light bulbs, getting their loft or cavity walls insulated, and buying a new super-efficient boiler can have a very large impact, and save money on their energy bills.
Copyright © 1995 - Photius Coutsoukis (All Rights Reserved).
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