Two renewable projects that you can invest in.

Two different models

Halton Lune hydro project.Untitled

Halton Carbon Positive
Halton was selected in 2010 as one of twenty “test bed” communities in the UK to create a green and low carbon infrastructure that could significantly cut carbon emissions. The hydro project was awarded grant funding as part of this project. The organizations that form part of Halton Carbon are Halton Community Association, Lancaster Cohousing, LESS (Lancaster) CIC and Halton Lune Hydro Ltd.

Halton Lune Hydro will, on average, generate more than 1,000 MWh of electricity every year  This will enable CO2 savings of around 575 tons annually.

Continue reading “Two renewable projects that you can invest in.”

An Eco-meter at Home

An eco-meter measures your electricity consumption every 4 seconds. Give one to a gadget geek who fills in spreadsheets as a stress buster and you have a recipe for endless data! Sticking only to the killer facts (hyperbole – nothing earth shattering really, but helpful) here is a taster of what I found out. (Do try this at home – it focused my attention on waste and, even if it won’t save the planet, I prefer doing something, to doing nothing.)jono-eco-meter

  1. Every £7 I spend on electricity dumps 1 kg of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere. (I’ve given my results in financial terms – this allows you to translate.)
  2. The computer, printer, hard disk combo, left on for 10 hours a day soaks up £47 a year – put it into sleep mode when not in use would save well over half of this. I get similar results for switching off the TV/free sat/DVD player.
  3. Don’t bother unplugging all your Apple charging kit – they don’t use any power for not charging and stop consumption when the device is fully charged.
  4. I also looked at my gas consumption and much to our relief, 1 bath costs about 20p.
  5. The eco-meter also tracked down an old-style light bulb which had been missed in the upgrade to the new low-energy variety.
  6. Don’t bother giving up your electric kettle – the gas variety is a little bit cheaper but not as much as you might think as it takes so much longer to boil.
  7. Use gas to heat your house rather than electricity (assuming the carbon dioxide released the kilowatt-hour produced by gas is the same as that produced by electricity.) It cost a third of the price per unit (KwHrs).

Okay, so nothing that you might not have known already but a useful reminder to switch off and cool down – every £10 saved is 3lb less CO2 in the atmosphere. (Roughly!)

For anyone who wants the figures, I am happy to email my spreadsheet – contact

Eco-meters available from Claire at 28 Derwent Road, Hexham

Posted on behalf of Jonathan Ewen

Silent vigil for the Arctic 30

You are invited to join a silent vigil this Saturday in Corbridge and/or Hexham in support of the Greenpeace Arctic 30 and to invite like-minded people to join too.

You will be aware that climate change can only be limited by leaving most of the coal in the ground and not pursuing extreme forms of oil and gas extraction. One of the most desperate of these is drilling for oil in the pristine Arctic waters, following the retreating ice. 

Gazprom and Shell are currently the only participants. Shell has been forced to pause its operations in the Alaskan Actic while it is under criminal investigation by the US Government following a series of blunders and accidents. It has opted for the more flexible regulatory environment of the Russian Arctic and gone into partnership with Russian owned Gazprom. Gazprom managed a spectacular 827 oil spills in 2012 alone.

On 18th September, whilst bearing witness to Gazprom’s imminent drilling for oil in international Arctic waters, the Greenpeace ship, Arctic Sunrise, always standing more than 3 nautical miles away from the Gazprom rig, was boarded by force, the crew arrested, and the ship then towed to Murmansk. The 28 Greenpeace activists from 17 different countries and 2 journalists were charged with piracy with a maximum 15 year jail term and refused bail.

All but 3 are now charged with hooliganism, with a maximum 7 year jail term, although the piracy charges are yet to be lifted. They have been detained in prison until yesterday when all but the radio operator were finally granted bail.

Gazprom are clearly requiring the Russian authorities to hit Greenpeace hard as we are the only body exposing their devastation of the environment to international scrutiny. Greenpeace will not withdraw from peaceful protest and calls for widespread international condemnation of Shell and Gazprom’s activities and for the withdrawal of the charges.

Saturday 16th November saw an international day of action with vigils throughout the world at Shell petrol stations, 2 in Newcastle.

On Saturday 23rd November there will be further vigils at Shell petrol stations, with one in Corbridge from 10am to 11am and one in Hexham from 11am to 12 noon, fuller details below. This will be a silent vigil on the public footpath only.

Following the well attended vigils for the Arctic 30 last Saturday at Shell petrol stations in Byker and South Gosforth Newcastle, there will be 2 further vigils in Tynedale on Saturday 23rd November in Corbridge and Hexham to which supporters are invited as follows:

10am to 11am, Bishops Garage, Main Street, Corbridge, NE45 5BL

11am to 12 noon, Dale garage, Haugh Lane, Hexham, NE46 3QQ

Contact person: Malcolm Reid, 01434 682678,

Tabards and posters will be provided.

Malcolm Reid


Fracking Hell!!!!

Did you know that we live here in Tynedale a potential fracking area.

One way of stoping fracking andleaving all that green house gasin the ground is to go to the wrongmove site and regester your house as a none fracking area!!.

Lets see if we can make Tynedale a none frack area!! this would lock up tons of carbon.

Click on the “more info” link on the wrong move site.

David G


Insulation meeting, Haltwhistle

Date :   Wed 19th June  7.30pm

Venue : Comrades Club,  Haltwhistle

Freezing house last winter ? Need more insulation ? South Tynedale Sustainability are hosting a Home Insulation evening on June 19th so come and get ideas for your home. The focus will be on solid walls and include grants and planning issues. The speaker will be David Connor of Warm Zone.

All welcome, including tenants and landlords.

Energy Fair 2013 – The Magnificent Eleven

The Energy Fair organising team met last night in the Skinners and we’re very pleased to count up that we already have 11 local installers confirmed for the Energy Fair on 11 May AND that they cover just about every type of renewable technology we can use on/in/under/around our homes – biomass, solar PV, solar thermal, ground source heat pumps, stoves, rainwater harvesting, micro CHP… and more.

Here are our Magnificent Eleven, already confirmed with 3.5 weeks still to go until the Fair:

In alphabtical order:

  1. ARPower advanced renewable power
  2. Centre For Green Energy
  3. D&E Renewables
  4. EcoLogicLiving
  5. Geowarmth
  6. Hadrian Electrical Engineering
  7. Logic Appleby
  8. Narec Distributed Energy
  9. Pure Green Energy
  10. PV Roofs / Maden Eco
  11. Sun Spirit

When we do the volunteer jobs rota for the day we’ll need to make sure that everyone has some free time to go round all the stalls ourselves! I’m certainly looking forward to working out what will be the next thing I can do to my own home =)

Tynedale Hospice at Home are providing the catering (proceeds to this excellent cause) and there will be lots more stalls, activities & info with an energy theme.

The Energy Fair is on Saturday 11 May, 10am – 4pm, at Trinity Methodist Hall, Beaumont Street, Hexham.

If you wish to exhibit at the Fair, contact us by emailing Please mark your email for the attention of Gillian.

Look forward to seeing you on Saturday 11 May.

Frack Off

Fracking may be something that may affect us in the North East too, as this letter in the Courant on Wednesday highlights:

Representatives from the anti-fracking campaign group Frack Off ( are available to come to Hexham and do a talk/presentation on the issues of this controversial process on Monday 8th of April.  If you would like to organise something please get in touch with Sandy (email:

The tale of Windy Nimby’s in my discussion group

(Transitioner: My voice is small and not noticed I wish my mates were here.)

Core Strategy Preferred options.

Renewable Energy Workshop

Policy 36: Large scale renewable and low carbon energy development

Policy 37: Large scale wind energy development

Policy 39: Small scale renewable and low carbon generation.

Time 1 hour

Facilitator: ok lets start discussing Policy 36

Windy Nimby: NO ! Lets start with what’s important, Policy 37

Facilitator: ok policy 37

Windy Nimby: Separation distances between wind turbines and residential properties………..Long discussion follows.

Transitioner: Hi people, if we had lots of small renewable’s we would need less wind farms and small people and small firms would benefit.

Windy Nimby:Did I hear a small voice! OH!!! its the transitioner, good idea, but the wind farms are here now… so lets get back to the subject, Health issues of a wind farm too close to my house!……….Long discussion follows….again.

Transitioner: Policy 39 ?

Windy Nimby:Did some one speak?? AH!! the greenie, What do people think of seeing wind farms from the Hadrians wall?.……….Long discussion follows….yet again.

Transitioner: Policy 39 Hydro, solor, heatpumps….. please

Facilitator: Times up!! sorry no time to discuss policy 39

Post from Sue Hick

Will you be doing it in the dark?

Sue Hick asked me to post this article David G

Millions of people will be turning their lights off between 8:30pm and 9:30pm on 23rd March as part of WWF’s Earth Hour.

Find out more


Powered by community spirit and sunshineWith a little help from their friends, Pendock Primary School took just 18 weeks to raise the money to install solar panels through 10:10’s Solar Schools initiative.

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Time to act on a decarbonisation targetWe need you to contact your local MP and ask them to seize this golden opportunity to set a clear carbon reduction objective for the power sector.

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Good Energy breaking the mouldWe were awarded the prestigious Financial Mail on Sunday Breaking the Mould award for our commitment to encouraging opportunities for women.

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Win an illuminating trip to the Brecon Beacons

The Brecon Beacons was recently awarded ‘dark sky reserve’ status, so to celebrate Earth Hour we’re giving away a weekend break to nearby Fronlas bed & breakfast.

Find out more