League of shame shows the worst energy wasters
ENEMIES of energy-saving have been pinpointed in a league of shame.
Householders in Castle Morpeth top a league of the worst energy wasters in the North East, according to figures from the Energy Saving Trust (EST).
People living in other rural council areas, such as Tynedale and Alnwick, also come out badly in the survey, while Newcastle and South Tyneside homeowners are rated the best at saving energy and limiting car use.
Rural areas in our region tend to top the green league when it comes to recycling the most waste. But a lack of public transport links and local shops and a high number of commuters are blamed for pushing up carbon emissions in these places and seeing them branded the worst wasters of energy.
Pensioner Jim Rudd, who lives in Morpeth with wife Ann, said: “There’s definitely a need to improve public transport in rural areas if you want to encourage people to stop using their cars.
“We use the bus services because we’re pensioners and it saves a lot of money. It’s all right from Morpeth, but if you live at Mitford for example, which is just outside Morpeth, you would have to get into Morpeth to use that service.
“As for energy saving in the home, we have solar panels on our roof and from April to September we hardly used the gas heating to heat our water.
“We have cavity wall and loft insulation, so I don’t think a lot escapes from our house. There are things that people can do but it’s up to the individual to make the effort.”
The EST carried out the first comprehensive survey of the UK’s biggest energy wasters and savers, street by street.
The model, part of the latest quarterly Green Barometer report, ranks people by their household and domestic car emissions, with the aim of tailoring advice to help people cut their carbon footprint and the region’s.
Research suggests 27% of the UK’s carbon emissions come from energy used to provide heating, lighting and hot water in our homes, but lack of insulation can see up to 50% of heat leaking out through walls and roofs.
The Energy Saving Trust gives advice on issues such as home energy efficiency, wind turbines, solar panels and transport, helping people reduce the amount of carbon emissions they’re responsible for.
Steve Hunter, director of the North East Energy Saving Trust advice centre, said local knowledge was a key factor in combating climate change. He said: “This latest Green Barometer report isn’t about singling out local authorities, as each area is unique and has its own challenges and opportunities.
“We provide help and advice to local authorities and we can now work with them to offer much more tailored energy advice.This wealth of information at our fingertips means householders are more likely to receive the information they need to act to curb carbon emissions. A targeted, localised approach is critical.” Advice freephone: 0800 512 012.