fbpx

Clean Vegan Energy: the Ecotricity Story

vegan energy

I’m absolutely thrilled to have Ecotricity as a sponsor of the April/May issue of Seedling! My flatmates and I use them as our energy supplier, and I really believe in what they do. So I thought I’d write a piece introducing them and explaining why they’re so awesome. Here goes!

***

When you transition to veganism, making sure your energy supplier is animal-friendly probably isn’t the first thing on your mind. But surprisingly, energy generation is not always vegan-friendly – most suppliers in the UK use animal waste and by-products to generate some of their energy. The only exception is Ecotricity – the company has even been recognised by the Vegan Society.

The Ecotricity story

Ecotricity was founded in 1996 by Dale Vince, making it the world’s first green energy company. It started out supplying energy produced using landfill gas, with the idea of using the profits to build wind turbines. Its first was built in December of that year.

The company grew steadily, and by 2017, Ecotricity had 74 wind turbines and was powering over 62,000 homes. This meant it was saving 49,018 tonnes of CO2 per year. The company also has an electric car charging network, which powered almost 5 million miles of driving with exclusively green energy in 2015 alone.

An Ecotricity wind turbine being constructed. Photo: Ecotricity

What is green energy?

Green energy is made only from renewable sources like wind, solar, and hydro power. All Ecotricity’s electricity is 100% renewable. Ecotricity also makes some of its gas from organic matter, and has plans to start making it from grass too – it already has planning permission for its first “green gasmill”. Some of the grass will be taken from land previously used for grazing, which should increase biodiversity and make it easier for wildflowers to grow.

14% of Ecotricity’s gas is currently made from organic matter; the company is working to grow this, and none of its gas is ever produced using fracking. This makes Ecotricity the most eco-friendly energy company in the UK, and the only vegan one.

Above and beyond

Ecotricity is the only energy company in the world to calculate its carbon cost per customer, meaning it factors in the emissions of absolutely everything it does to calculate its environmental impact. It aims to reduce this carbon cost every year. And the company is not-for-dividend, so all the money it makes is used to make even more clean energy.

It’s also attempting to bring down the fracking industry, and to make electric car charging points more accessible. If you use Ecotricity at home, you get discounts at its car charging points too.

Changing energy supplier could make a huge difference to your carbon footprint! I really do think Ecotricity are amazing, and would highly recommend them. If you’re interested in switching, you can find out more here.

All about Ecotricity, the only #vegan energy supplier in the UK - and the most #eco-friendly one too. #environment #climatechange #sustainability
Photo: Ecotricity

3 comments / Add your comment below

  1. I signed up to Green Energy a decade or more ago. At the time they were the only 100% renewable supplier. When we left the UK we kept and let the house and I persuaded our tenants to use Good Energy also and the house still does to this day.

    Over time Ecotricity started providing 100% renewables also. They also started building more of their own renewable power generation well before Good Energy (who were just buying energy to start with). Good Energy starting trying to catch up in this regard, but I suspect Ecotricity are still ahead in % of their electricity that they produce themselves. I love what Ecotricity is doing with the car charging network and the veganizing is another advantage. I think they probably are the leading ethical supplier of energy in the UK at the moment.

    It frustrates me a bit that people won’t change to a green energy supplier when it just takes a simple phone call. A lot of people sadly only care about price. I did have to pay 18% more when I signed up to Green Energy years ago, are the green energy suppliers in the UK on par for cost these days or it still higher? If all you care about is price, at least sign up to Bulb?

    I do wish the government would tax fossil fuels, at whatever point in the supply chain, and provide subsidies to green energy suppliers, to make the green energy the cheapest. It’s frustrating when the unselfish people have to pay more. I also think this would drive the building of renewables quite a bit as well.

    1. Yes it is frustrating that green suppliers can be more expensive. I suspect many people aren’t aware of them though, maybe more would switch if they were better informed. It’s great that you convinced your tenants to stick with Good Energy! 🙂

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: