When we burn fossil fuels such as natural gas and oil to create energy to power our homes and industry, we release carbon emissions into the atmosphere. Carbon emissions heat up the Earth and have caused dangerous changes to our climate, leading to excessively high temperatures, forest fires, droughts and floods. And the Earth is now warming at an unprecedented rate, meaning that our climate is now classed as being in a crisis1.
We all have a part to play to help combat climate change. And by making some small - and a few more major - changes around your home, we can help to reverse the dangerous effects that global warming is having on our planet.
Things you can do to help stop climate change
1. Reduce, reuse and recycle
Reducing your use of single-use plastic is an easy way to help the environment. Most of us already reuse plastic carrier bags or use cloth alternatives when shopping or have swapped single-use coffee cups for a thermos and invested in reusable water bottles.
And another easy way is to avoid items in plastic packaging where you can by buying loose fruit and vegetables and opting for cardboard packing as an easier to recycle alternative. Make recycling even easier by labelling your recycling boxes to help you sort your recycling waste and flatten cardboard boxes, plastic bottles and cans to maximise the space.
Before you buy anything for your home consider the impact it might have on the environment and whether there is a greener, sustainable alternative. Once you go looking for them, you'll be surprised how many reusable versions of traditionally single-use household items there are. You can ditch cling film for reusable beeswax food wraps, line baking tins with reusable baking liner rather than disposable baking paper, and you can even reuse glass food jars for storage.
In the garden, instead of buying bags of compost for planting, invest in a garden composter so you can use your food waste to grow your plants. And, you can reduce the amount of smoke you release into the atmosphere every time you barbecue by switching to more eco-friendly coconut charcoal – helping to clear the air.
2. Monitor your energy use
Keeping track of how much energy you use and making some small changes to cut down on your energy use gives you the control to help combat global warming.
Instead of leaving your computers, games consoles and TVs on standby, switch them off at the mains and do the same for your oven and microwave.
Turn the lights off when you leave a room and only use the lights you need. Switch to energy efficient LED lightbulbs to make your lighting even greener.
If you don’t have time to go around switching everything off at the end of the day, consider our Lightwave system – it lets you control your lighting and sockets from wherever you are, so you can always have peace of mind that you’ve not left any lights or appliances on.
And why not get some help in monitoring your energy use. Smart meters make it easier to see which devices use the most energy and CO2 emissions in your home. Meaning when you see how much electricity your tumble dryer uses, for example, you may dry your washing in the sun (or even in an overcast garden) more often. What’s more, if every home in Britain upgrades to a smart meter, by 2035 our CO2 emissions will fall by 25%, compared to 2015 levels2.
3. Be heat smart
Improving the energy efficiency of your home’s heating reduces the amount of energy needed to comfortably heat your home and lowers your carbon footprint as a result.
To make your heating more energy efficient, fit a smart thermostat and individual smart radiator thermostats to each of your radiators. The tado° smart thermostat checks the weather forecast and automatically turns down your heating on warm days. It also makes sure that your home is only heated when someone’s home and lets you control the temperature in different rooms, so you don't heat rooms that no one’s using.
To cut the energy you use to heat your home and hot water even more, invest in a new A-rated, gas boiler, which runs on far less energy than older, inefficient boilers. Or install an air-source heat pump to generate your own clean heat. This environmentally-friendly energy source heats your hot water and radiators or underfloor heating and generates three times more heat for each unit of energy used to power it3.
4. Move to 100% renewable energy
One of the best ways to help prevent climate change is to stop using polluting fossil fuels as an energy source. That’s why all our customers' homes benefit from 100% renewables-backed electricity as standard4, and our new Go Green gas option will help our customers be even more sustainable. For an optional extra £2 a month, you can offset the carbon generated by the gas you use. And for every home that upgrades to Go Green, we'll plant five trees in the Amazon Rainforest and fund carbon emission reduction projects like wind farms to help tackle the global climate crisis and cut your energy carbon footprint.
5. Make your own energy
Cut your carbon emissions and your energy bill even further by installing solar panels to generate renewable energy from the sun. They can save you up to £400 a year on electricity and you can earn money by selling any excess electricity generated back to E.ON.
And install a solar battery to store the energy you generate and reduce your reliance on the grid even more. Storing your energy to use when it best suits you, means you can use more of your own renewable electricity and avoid polluting fossil fuels.
6. How to stop climate change – pass it on
The more people make these switches, the quicker we’ll help stop climate change. Learn more about our renewable energy commitment and share this article on your social media channels.
1. Nasa: Climate Change: How Do We Know?
2. Smart Energy GB: Without smart meters, meeting our climate change targets will be slower, harder and more expensive
3. 1 kWh of electricity in with 3 kWh of heating out. Dependent on weather conditions.
4. Electricity sourced from E.ON’s renewable generation assets, supply agreements with independent UK wind generators and the purchase of renewable electricity certificates. The electricity supplied to your homes comes from the National Grid. Find out more at eonenergy.com/renewable