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BRITISH PUBLIC WASTES £5BN ENERGY EVERY YEAR

Did you know that the British public wastes around £5 billion worth of energy every year and that the average household could save up to £200 a year on their energy bills by being more energy efficient?

A survey carried out by British Gas found that while householders were aware it was important to use less power, the results were a clear ‘could do better’.

Jill Harrison, Head of Consumer Affairs at British Gas said: “We asked households to take part in a green audit to see how British homes measured up”.

With marks out of 100, the green average was found to be a rather poor 43. Results showed that just by leaving our TVs on standby rather instead of switching them off properly shows that Britain as a country, wastes enough electricity to power an area the size of Basingstoke.

That’s why British Gas is keen to offer advice with some simple energy efficiency steps that will not only benefit the environment but also benefit all of us financially through the savings we make.

• Over 40% of all heat lost in an average home is through the loft and walls. With 250mm (10mm) of loft insulation it can save up to 25% of your heating costs.

Cavity wall insulation can reduce heat loss by up to 60% and can save homeowners up to £100 on their annual energy bills.

• Double glazing cuts heat loss, reduces noise and condensation problems and can help save up to £40 on bills a year.

• The older your boiler the more inefficient it will be. If it is 15 years old or more, British Gas and the Energy Saving Trust recommend that it should be replaced.

The Government is also endorsing new energy efficient measures backed by legislation which takes effect from 1st April 2005.

From this date all new boilers installed in England and Wales will have to be of a condensing type and rated ‘A’ or ‘B’ in terms of efficiency.

If you would like to find out more about this or arrange for a free and no obligation visit from one of British Gas’s technical advisers please telephone: 0845 7 754 754 and quote AW45.

Condensing boilers are the most energy efficient and will use up to a third less energy saving you up to £140 a year.

• Upgrading heating controls will improve the efficiency of any central heating system – reducing your heating thermostat by 1?C when you are too warm can cut up to 10% off heating bills. Fit thermostats to radiators to control the temperature in each room.

• Put a minimum 75mm insulating jacket on your hot water tank to keep water hotter for longer and check your thermostat is set no higher than 60?C.

• When renewing appliances, look for the Energy Efficiency Recommended logo which is on a wide range of products. Household appliances will be wasting you money if they’re not energy efficient.

Always choose kitchen appliances that are ‘A’ rated as they’re the most energy efficient.

The need to conserve resources and save energy is relevant and important to us ALL, both now and in the future.

Anyone in the UK wishing to have their home checked for energy efficiency improvements or simply to find out the latest energy saving tips, offers, and schemes can visit the British Gas

Red: Represents heat loss from an un-insulated building. The heat from within is transferring through the wall.

Yellow and Green: Represent insulated areas. The colds spots show that heat is being trapped within the building.

The thermal camera cannot see through glass. The images of windows show only the reflections from outside the building (or inside depending in where the picture is taken).

Internally, images show the opposite of the above. Cold areas show missing insulation and hot spots show insulated areas.

BRITAIN IS LOW DOWN IN THE ECO-DUMP!

Since the Davos World Economic Forum started this week, it has emerged that the UK that the UK has one the worst environmental records according to the 2005 Environmental Sustainability Index.

The ESI was drawn up by researchers at Yale and Columbia universities to gauge each nation’s ability “to protect the environment over the next several decades.”

The UK ranks 66th out of 146 countries indexed. The US which, is often highly criticized by other countries for its lack of commitment to climate change, is ranked higher at 45th. Also, most of the former USSR countries are better than the UK.

There is, however, some small consolation, the same 2002 index put Britain at 91.

Daniel Esty of the Yale center for environmental law and policy says: “In the UK the weakest element is land degradation.

There is a high percentage of British land that has been messed with through 1000 years of history.

Also London and other UK cities have “serious air pollution problems” although Paris and Rome are far worse!