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Posted by in Eco Products, Eco News Blog on May 04, 2010 .

Last week I went on a 3 day grid tied solar photovoltaic  (solar PV) installation training course up in Chesterfield. I know my off grid solar PV  as I design and supply systems for battery charging  regularly, but getting the low down on grid tied installations was an interesting and worthwhile process.

Microgeneration Certification Scheme (MCS) 

For my customers to benefit from the new Feed in Tariffs  (introduced April 2010) all equipment installed and I, as the installer, have to be MCS accredited.

It is a prerequisite of becoming a Microgeneration Certification Scheme (MCS) accredited installer that I can prove I am...

Posted by in Energy Saving Tips, Eco News Blog on Apr 18, 2010 .

It is estimated by the company that has been contracted to supply the 1st million of these dual fuel smart meters that the technolgy could help customers save a total of £200m on energy bills over the next decade. That's a huge saving in total energy use which is excellent news. The benefit to individual households will be less significant (£20 per year doing some simple maths on the headline £200m figure above) however, the fact that smart metering will help customers more easily monitor and control their own energy use has got to be great step in the right direction.

How Smart Meters Work

British Gas' smart meters will monitor...

Posted by in Eco News Blog on Apr 14, 2010 .

I don't know about you, but when people talk about light pollution I normally assume they are concerned about the lack of visibility of the night sky or the fact that they can't get to sleep because of the street light outside their bedroom window. Or that's what I used to think, what I am saying to you now is that it might be worth thinking a bit harder about the full consequences of light pollution.

I live out in the sticks a bit and on a clear night if I look up I can see the stars very well. Look to the South West however, where the City of Leicester nestles just below the horizon and the stars are very quickly lost in the...

Posted by in Eco News Blog on Apr 12, 2010 .

As part of its commitment to decreasing our reliance on fossil and nuclear fuels the UK Government has brought in a new Feed in Tariff, FIT (sometimes referred to as Energy Cashbacks) effective from this month, April 2010.

The Feed in Tariff obliges energy companies to pay a premium price to the energy generator (that could be you!) for ALL the renewable energy produced. It doesn't matter if the renewable energy produced is consumed at the owners property or exported back to the grid - every kWh of renewable energy produced will be paid for by the energy company.

This means renewable energy generators get a double benefit when using...

Posted by in Eco News Blog on Mar 15, 2010 .

Why not have a go at growing some of your own food this year? Growing a few veggies doesn't need a lot of space and can be very rewarding. You get the satisfaction of knowing exactly where your food came from and knowing that it is the result of your own endeavour. Home grown food always tastes better too.

It's simple and inexpensive to get started but if you need a bit of an incentive, visit the BBC's Dig In website  where you can apply for a free dig in pack containing 5 easy to grow veg varieties which come with full instructions and stickers. There are also animated guides and top tips at the BBC Dig In site.

A great way to get...

Posted by in Eco News Blog on Mar 10, 2010 .

In 2009 WWF's Earth Hour took the world by storm as it travelled east to west and hundreds of millions of people switched off their lights. Earth Hour was embraced by people in over 3,000 cities and towns, nearly 1,000 landmarks and more than 83 countries around the world.  

In 2010 it is hoped that 1 billion people will sign up and switch off to show they care about climate change. Individuals, organisations, schools and businesses can all get involved.

This is a great initiative form WWF. If you have concerns about the need for global action to tackle climate change but feel helpless as an individual this is your chance to make...

Posted by in Eco Products, Eco News Blog on Mar 01, 2010 .
I read somewhere on the web recently that an estimated 214 million batteries were used over the 2009 Christmas period in the UK alone.  That’s a staggering figure. The value of these batteries is in the region  of £133 million, however, what’s more concerning is that apparently around 97% of these batteries will end up in landfill.
 
Unfortunately batteries contain toxic chemicals and heavy metals such as lead, mercury and cadmium. If not properly disposed of these can leak into the earth and ground water and the accumulation of these toxins over time is a danger to the environment, potentially causing disease and poisoning of...

Posted by in Eco News Blog on Feb 16, 2010 .

Because the cold winter temperatures have extended well into February (I thought they always did?) I see the oft referred to "experts" are touting a spectacular spring as all the bulbs will burst into life in the next few weeks.

Anyway, the snowdrops are already out here at Ecofreak HQ in Leicestershire, and the tell tale stems of daffodils are peeping out of the grass on the verges and in gardens and fields everywhere. 

Spring is a great time. Nothing better than the signs of new growth and promise of good things to come later in the year. We usually get some of the best days of the year in my opinion in March in the UK. They are...

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