Is there a way to get 100% green energy?
By Mof Gimmers | Friday, June 18th 2021
Green energy is now going mainstream, with more and more people wanting to change the way we collectively source and consume energy. As a result, there is a growing number of specialist providers out there now offering green tariffs, but how green are they?
The large energy firms are also increasingly offering 100% green energy deals. We take a look at what’s on offer from both large and small suppliers and which providers offer the greenest energy deals for gas and electricity.
Energy companies that are 100% green
Green Energy UK lives up to its name by being the sole UK provider to offer 100% green electricity and 100% green gas. It’s not cheap and is exempt from the Ofgem Price Cap too, but if you want 100% green energy, then Green Energy UK is your best bet.
One of the bigger suppliers in the UK, OVO Energy is also one of the greenest, offering 100% renewable electricity and 15% green gas, with the remaining 85% gas being carbon offset as a result of Ovo’s projects around the world, including tree planting in East Africa and India, coastal conservation in Guatemala and the introduction of methane digesters in China.
Bulb offers 100% renewable electricity, but only 10% of its gas is green. While that might seem on the low side, it is still considerably more than most other suppliers. Bulb also has a tariff that can help you become carbon neutral, by offsetting your usage with projects that reduce carbon emissions elsewhere.
Octopus offers 100% green electricity. Although it does not offer any green gas, all its gas is 100% carbon offset. Its renewable electricity comes from solar, wind and hydro power, as well as anaerobic digestion.
Pure Planet offers 100% renewable electricity and promotes the clean energy message with the phrase ‘No fossils, no nukes, no fracking.’. No coal. No nukes’. It does not offer green gas at all, but 100% of its gas is carbon offset due to its various projects, including tree-planting in the Amazon and the introduction of clean energy in the Philippines.
These energy companies offer just a snapshot of what’s on offer across the renewable energy market, and other companies are available. It seems to be an industry standard for these suppliers to offset the energy they get from the grid with green energy they put back in. Think of it as an attempt to neutralise the fossil fuels that are being used on the National Grid.
Reasons to go green
The main point of green energy is the lack of greenhouse emissions. There’s a host of companies who are now looking beyond fossil fuels, and utilising solar power, hydroelectricity, biomass fuels and other methods in a bid to help the world be a cleaner, more sustainable place. It is also a growing market in job creation too; thanks to more businesses looking into renewable energy, more hands are needed to maintain and create the systems which enable green energy to happen.
Also, it reduces a need for foreign oil, which means energy can be generated domestically, and gives countries a certain energy independence, and with that, financial and political independence too.
The previously high levels of scepticism around affordable green energy are now disappearing, with 100% green electricity – if not gas – now becoming the norm amongst most UK energy suppliers.
Where can I find green energy companies?
There’s a number of ways to find the best green energy company for you, and like a traditional energy company, price comparison sites are there to help you see what fits you best. As well as those listed above, it’s also worth looking at Good Energy and Ecotricity, to name but two, that offer green energy deals.
A comparison site will allow you to check the best deals, once you’ve set your parameters to see the firms using clean energy. Be sure to ‘see all’ or click more when given the initial results of a comparison search, as while the initial results may offer you the best deal for your bank account, it may not immediately include the greener businesses. Rest assured, they will be included and finding them requires minimal digging.
It is important to remember that your financial situation and needs come first, and while trying to help the planet is admirable, don’t end up with a tariff that is going to put you in financial difficulty – that’s why you should check all the offers and contracts on price comparison sites – tot up the numbers first, then see about the best ways in which you can do your bit.
Is green energy more expensive?
Like any energy company, prices vary depending on what you’re looking for. Some years ago, greener firms would have been more expensive, but in recent years prices have largely come into line with the competition. There are now green tariffs available that are some of the most competitive on the market, but it is always best to check with a comparison tool and do your own research to see which price bracket and service suits you best.
The more people that show interest in the companies offering renewable energy, the lower the prices go. While that’s a given for any business, the growth of green energy companies is encouraging. If the market leans a certain way, then companies will listen, making for a more competitive market. That’s the rose-tinted idea, at least.
While it seems we’re some years off from 100% green energy being available right across the market, great strides are being made when it comes to clean energy. As it stands, the choice for consumers is either to wait for the larger suppliers to throw their considerable money behind renewable energy, or to sign up with a company that balances out their source power by putting clean energy back into the grid.
As it stands, all energy comes from the same pool, which isn’t 100% renewable. That said, if you’re looking to be more environmentally-friendly, there are steps you can take to reduce the amount of energy you’re using. That includes increased insulation in the home, better windows to keep the heat in, and anything else you can do that might encourage you to turn the heating down and be more efficient with the appliances you’re using.