Monday, September 16, 2013

enviROI in action - I hope, in a good way

With that most dreaded of news periods now underway, conference season, the idiocies are already gaining headlines.

First out the traps are the Lib Dems though, possibly, not in the best, or at least most coherent of ways...

This one rather highlighting another area of interest of mine, namely the pursuit of green wonderousness whilst at the same time driving population increase and economic growth via consumer consumption.

However another fresh from the oven has taken my fancy for a blog, and that regards enviROI

It's inspired by this:

Because, you see, even if the new installation had made things cooler, £4.5M may have achieved more in GHG reduction if applied elsewhere.

I had been pondering this already as I noted my trusty LPG Volvo was attracting a car tax of £180, while newer (and doubtless more fuel efficient) diesel equivalents were seeing much lower charges. Thing is, there's not just mpg and what comes out the pipe. I just wonder what it 'cost' in GHGs to make a new car vs. keeping a perfectly good one going?

Anyway, I hope what follows may prove a more positive story to conclude with.

Nearby is some social housing managed by the council. Safe to say they are 'of an era'. Well, just lately there has been a hive of activity in and around them.

It started with new roofs, but there was also a great deal of loft insulation too. I can only applaud, especially if the taxpayer is covering the utility bills too. Still great if on the tenant's tab as subsidy direction goes.

But now I am watching, as some frankly amazing retroactive wall insulation is going up too. No cavity walls here, and frankly the size means internal cover would restrict area too much.

It's not just the nature of it, but the ease and speed of putting it up. Cut with a saw like butter, and then nail through... wham bam. In the pictures you see, that wall was covered in 30 minutes.

I await to see the exterior cover (and will add a pic), which will obviously need to be impact and weather resistant.

But as an effort to add value to home and planet's future, I'd say such as this is much more worthwhile than all the stupid games the politicians (and some media) are playing with big ticket, dubious cradle to grave, low enviROI projects still, now, when money is tight.

Update Nov 1 2013

Having asked, a contractor has kindly stuck their card through the door.
They came a fair old way, suggesting such services are thin on the ground.

Wednesday, September 04, 2013


Every day has its ups and downs.

So it's nice when you get an unexpected 'up' just in the course of one.

Sent my lads off back to school today.

And as a small gift, at the weekend when we were in Gloucester I had seen a pen set in the local Poundland there that I thought would be nice to give them.

And they did appreciate it (personal, parent score 1).

But just now as I was about to pop the packaging in the recycling bin I noticed a small piece of printing bottom right.

Now I won't say I have forgotten, but it was just a lovely reminder that there are folk out there who like what we're trying to do at, and have stuck with their commitment to support all along.

Thanks Poundland. And especially Neil.

Tuesday, September 03, 2013

It always pays to wave a flag

A while ago I noticed one of those pieces of passing PR that are so easy to let wash over you.
(actually it was in the Telegraph, but they have a paywall limit so this'll do)

In this case I decided to pop the good Lord a missive:

"Reading your plans in yesterday's Telegraph, I can only wish you well.

There are of course many ways to encourage folk to 'save', both planet
and money, and more and more seem keen to embrace them.

What would be good is to further bridge the gap more between
manufacturers/retailers doing as little as they can in compliance,
often hiding behind the jargon of the CSR industry, and consumers who
tend to think more in terms of simplicity and end benefit."

It took a while but I am glad to say it has been replied to, in as nice a way as may be hoped:

Dear Mr Martin,

Waste reduction

Thank you for your email of 8 August to Lord de Mauley about waste reduction.  I have been asked to reply.

"As you may know, the Minister’s statement was linked to our publication on 6 August of a public consultation on our draft proposals for the Waste Prevention Programme for England ( prevention/).  The results of the consultation will inform the final Programme, which is due to be finalised in December.  We are grateful for your comments, which have been passed to the relevant policy officials and will be considered as part of the consultation exercise.
Preventing waste from being produced in the first place is not only good for the environment, but for the economy and household budgets too.  Research shows that businesses can make £17 billion in annual savings by taking simple steps to produce less waste.  Everyone has a part to play in reducing waste.  Our proposals in this programme will help individuals and organisations recognise the savings they can make by cutting waste and passing on items they no longer use.  It will explore ways to make it easier for individuals to reuse and repair items.  It also aims to ensure that products are designed to last longer, contain fewer hazardous parts and reduce the environmental impact of the waste they create."