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Who are the greenest energy suppliers in the UK?

author: Sarah Beresford

By Sarah Beresford

By choosing a supplier that opts for more sustainable energy sources, you can play your role in reducing your carbon footprint. 

1. Bulb

Bulb supplies 100% green electricity and 10% green gas, 100% of their gas is carbon neutral. Bulb offset gas emissions by supporting global initiatives such as forest conservation and solar and wind farms.

There are just two tariffs to keep things simple - pay monthly or pay as you go. When a new customer joins, Bulb donates £1 to a charity that educates children in food growing.

If you recommend someone who switches to them, you’ll both get £50 via their “refer a friend” scheme. Bulb doesn’t charge an exit fee, and if you switch to them, they'll pay up to £60 of your exit fee with your current supplier.

For those with renewable energy sources installed at home, such as solar panels, Bulb allows you to sell your excess energy back to the national grid.

You can also try their carbon footprint calculator.

2. Ecotricity

Ecotricity is an ethical energy supplier endorsed by the Vegan Society.  They aim to protect animal welfare by never using energy produced using animals. Their electricity is 100% green. Currently, only 5% of their gas supply is from renewable sources, but they're building green gas mills that should see this level increase in the future. Much like the other companies, they offset 100% of the gas emissions.

Ecotricity doesn't have shareholders, so rather than paying dividends, it can reinvest some of the profits into creating more renewable energy sources like solar farms. They'll also donate to the Vegan Society if new customers sign up. And, there's no exit fee if you want to leave.

Their “Fully Charged” tariff for electric vehicle owners could help you save over £150 on your bills.

3. Ovo Energy

Ovo Energy’s electricity is 100% green. For every year that you're with them, they'll plant a tree in your name in association with the Woodland Trust. So far, they've planted almost two million trees.

Ovo has four green tariffs to choose from, and for an extra £6 a month you can add the Ovo "Beyond" upgrade. With this upgrade, you'll receive 100% green gas too (15% renewable and 85% offset), and they'll plant five trees for you every year instead of one.

The variable rolling tariff has no exit fee, but the three fixed tariffs have an exit fee of £30.

4. Octopus Energy

Octopus has won the Which? Recommended Energy Supplier award four times. There are several tariffs to choose from, including innovative tariffs, all with 100% green electricity. The gas supplied by Octopus isn't green unless you opt for their "super green” tariff in which case they’ll offset 100% of the gas emissions.

If you're looking to reduce your bills, you can opt for one of their innovative tariffs that offer cheaper energy for off-peak use - between the hours of 00:30 and 04:30. "Octopus Go" is particularly appealing to shift workers and owners of electric vehicles who like to charge their car overnight.

Another innovative tariff is their Agile tariff which tracks wholesale energy prices. Tracking prices in real-time means you can take advantage of rates as low as 2p/kWh. With this tariff, prices can go up and down, but they cap the price at 35p/kWh.

5. Bristol Energy

Bristol Energy is a relatively new company, only in business since 2015. Their tariffs include 100% renewable electricity and 15% renewable gas. They offset gas emissions between 50% and 100%, depending on the tariff you choose. The 25-month fixed tariff includes 100% renewable energy and a donation of £20 to local social and environmental causes.

Bristol Energy uses sewage waste from Bristolians to produce renewable energy and is committed to helping local causes.

You can compare energy suppliers on USwitch and look for those that have green plans.

Read on to find out how often you should switch energy suppliers.

 

Disclaimer: All information and links are correct at the time of publishing.

author: Sarah Beresford

By Sarah Beresford

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