Open House Energy Meeting: How can we reduce our carbon footprint in Wilmslow and save money?

Transition Wilmslow are hosting an open meeting to discuss how we can use energy in our homes more efficiently and the exciting possibility of a green energy generation hub in Wilmslow and Macclesfield.

Andrew Backhouse of Transition Wilmslow will talk about what we have learnt from doing energy surveys in Wilmslow and how we can reduce energy use in our homes

Mike Rance from Go-Lo Macclesfield will talk about the exciting potential of green energy generation and battery storage based on experience gained in an ongoing project to evaluate battery storage in social housing in Macclesfield and Knutsford. The potential for larger scale green energy storage hubs will also be discussed

The speakers will then be joined by Frances Hill (Centre for Alternative Technology) and Geoff Levermore (University of Manchester) on a discussion panel, chaired by Anthony Jones (Manchester University)

The meeting will take place on Thursday 9th March 2017 at the Friends Meeting House, Bourne St., Wilmslow, 7.30-9.00 pm.  Entrance is free with donation for refreshments.  All are welcome.

Mike Rance of Go-Lo-Macclesfield said ‘The potential is there to establish community energy hubs by installing solar arrays on the roofs of local amenities with associated battery storage to provide lower cost energy for the benefit of the local community’

Andrew Backhouse said ‘We can do so much by making lots of small savings in energy use in our own homes and its fun thinking about these things’

For more information contact transitionwilmslow@gmail.com

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Save Energy – Save Money

With temperatures dropping it is time for many to think about reducing
Winter fuel bills. Transition Wilmslow is offering a free survey to any
householder in the local area to assess the heat loss from their home. With
the use of a thermal camera hot and cold spots can be identified and advice
will be given on how energy can be saved. Often quite simple, low-cost
remedies can be applied. This is a way to reduce your fuel bills, keep your
home warmer and to do your bit for the environment. Over the past few
winters over a hundred local dwellings have been checked with real success.

If you would like to have your house assessed by a team from the Transition
Wilmslow Energy Group then please contact Ali Berry on 07887 425387, email:
transitionwilmslow@gmail.com to make an appointment. We are confident that
you will find it worthwhile.

Living Smart in Australia

The ‘Living Smart’ programme; Part 3

Marianne (our Wilmslow Transitioner currently living in Australia) gives us news of the third session of the ‘Living Smart’ programme she is attending.

Power

We learnt about energy saving, use and generation.  This is one of the areas where the UK and Australia diverge dramatically.

What surprised me was that the things you do to keep your house warm in the UK are not the same things you do to keep your house cool in Australia!

Double glazing is no good for keeping heat out, but it is effective for keeping heat in.

We looked at making a dwelling ‘solar passive’ whilst making the most of winter sun, how to read an electricity bill, which things consume most power in a house and then how we could bring our electricity bill down dramatically.

FIVE TOP ACTIONS

  • Get a home energy assessment
  • Turn down your thermostat and insulate the pipes on your hot water system
  • Minimise how often you need to heat and cool your home
  • Turn off standby
  • Purchase or generate your own renewable energy

Meanwhile back home …….

Transition Wilmslow can help with advice on energy saving – and carry out an energy survey on your home.

For more information contact us at transitionwilmslow@gmail.com

Sign up to Earth Hour

Will you switch off your lights and switch on your social power for The Official Earth Hour 2016?

Saturday 19 March, 8.30-9.30pm


 

Will you also join Transition Wilmslow for a

‘Special Earth Hour’? Friday 1 April, 8.30-9.30pm

Still switching off the lights, and having a really good sing – song, by candlelight, with Doug MacDonald at the piano.

Please note the change of date!

Earth Hour 2016 flyer

 

 

Wilmslow Community Energy scheme at risk by Government apparent attacks on solar generation

North East Cheshire Community Energy (NECCE) fears their community solar scheme cannot go ahead due to the Government’s proposed plans to savagely cut support for rooftop solar energy systems.

Before the last election its parent group, Transition Wilmslow, was encouraged by Government support to start a community benefit society to invest in local energy generation and provide funds to plough back in to the wider community. This would build on the work Transition Wilmslow has done with Wilmslow Town Council doing household energy surveys, using a thermal imaging camera.

NECCE has been working hard for the last 9 months to identify suitable community buildings, raise awareness and set up the right structure, engaging with students who were keen to reduce costs for their school. They were particularly excited about getting solar panels on Wilmslow High School as it was spending over £100,000 per year on its power bill.

The benefits would be:

  • cheaper electricity for the school
  • a rate of return to people who invested in the scheme
  • income for a community fund.

In August, our local MP, George Osborne said:

“I am happy to support you wherever I can.”

Andrew Backhouse acting chair of NECCE has said that many people have been very keen to invest into something local that will:

  • pay them a level of interest
  • reduce our carbon footprint
  • help local schools generate their own electricity
  • help children learn about this in the process
  • and cut their costs.

This is now unlikely to happen!

The expected policy change is going to stop any chance of progress. We understand that the Government might want to reduce the cost of energy in the short term – but they should be thinking long term to cut carbon emissions further, taking advantage of local investment, and doing more to boost local community involvement.”

Here’s what Caitlin a sixth form pupil at the local school said

“I think it’s disappointing that the government has changed their stance on the Feed in Tariffs (FITs) considering their huge positive effect on the UK’s energy supply. The initiative’s removal has had a major impact not only nationally but also locally. Our school could really have benefited from solar panels, both environmentally and financially, not to mention the valuable learning resource that would have been created”

The community group have written to George Osborne asking him to support their cause and back subsidy for solar, but so far he is awaiting a response from the Department for Energy and Climate Change.

If you want to know more about community energy locally, or to ask for help in reducing your energy consumption, contact Andrew on Andrew.backhouse@phonecoop.coop or 01625 537087

More details of NECCE  are on – http://necheshirecommunityenergy.org.uk/

Also see http://keepfits.org/news//we-should-call-community-energy-the-mailman

 

Ashton Hayes Going Carbon Neutral – Open Day 9 May

The Ashton Hayes Going Carbon Neutral Project is a community-led initiative that is aimed at making Ashton Hayes the first carbon neutral community in England. Since January 2006 carbon dioxide emissions have been reduced by 23% as a result of the community working together, sharing ideas and through behaviour change. They are about to start work on a community owned renewable energy power station.

They are holding an open day on Saturday 9 May to show what they have achieved since their project began in 2006. Please get in touch if you would like more information: transitionwilmslow@gmail.com

signlandscape1

For more information about the project see their website: http://www.goingcarbonneutral.co.uk/background/

Zero Carbon Britain?

Can we do it? Yes we can!

This was the main theme at ‘Love Wilmslow, Love Our Planet’, a joint venture with Churches Together in Wilmslow and Transition Wilmslow at The Wilmslow Guild on St Valentine’s Day 2015.

What do we have in common? It’s a wish to look after our planet, to keep it for future generations too, and to take steps to reduce climate change.

We started the morning session with Paul Allen, one of the authors of Zero Carbon Britain who gave an uplifting and rich presentation about how reaching zero carbon emissions was very possible:

  • We could rapidly reduce UK greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions to net zero by 2030, using only currently available technology.

  • We could reduce our energy demand by around 60%, with particularly large savings in heating buildings and transport.

  • It is possible to meet 100% of the UK’s energy demand with renewable and carbon neutral energy sources; without fossil fuels and without new nuclear.

Read more here and download the latest report.

 After a bread and soup lunch Professor John Handley gave a talk entitled ‘Lindow Moss; Making Sense of the Planning Application, followed by discussion.

 Meanwhile there were craft and recycling activities to learn – composting, biscuit decoration, crochet, knitting, making gift boxes from Christmas cards to name a few. A highlight was a ‘stomp’ – a musical and movement performance using scrap material, organized by Wilmslow High School students.

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Participants were also alerted to many local initiatives to reduce climate change. Some are recycling tools through Work Aid, raising money for solar lights and cookers for slums in Nairobi through Kibera in Need and cutting down on food waste through Waste Watch. If we don’t do a lot to cut our energy consumption, the future for our children will be very different with climate change.

 So how do we get there? Part of the way forward must be to strengthen our community. We need to encourage one another, and the town council could be a leader in this. Perhaps we could have electric cars and bikes as a greener part of the Wilmslow Motor Show!

Most of all it should be fun!

See what Low Carbon Lymm is doing. Also…..

Ashton Hayes going carbon neutral

A talk by Professor Roy Alexander

Friday 13 March 7.30pm-9.30pm

Wilmslow Guild, Bourne St, Wilmslow, SK9 5HD

Ashton Hayes, a community of about 1,000 people, is aiming to become England’s first carbon neutral community. By working together, sharing ideas and through behavioural change they have reduced carbon emissions by 23% since 2006.

RGS-IBG members free, non-members £5 donation on the door.