Green tariffs: What are they, and should you be bothered?

By Energy Company Numbers on November 16, 2014 in Help and advice

Renewable Energy comes from sources that are not permanently depleted by their use; they are naturally renewed. When using energy that is naturally renewed we are using low carbon, we can extract energy from such sources, convert it into a more useful form such as electricity or heat, and have some confidence that there will be enough energy for future generations. As a result, renewable energy has a lower impact on the main causes of climate change.

Ofgem (the energy regulator in the UK) launched a green tariff certification. By choosing a green energy tariff you can make a positive impact on the environment. The environmental benefits range significantly from one tariff to another. With this certification in place energy suppliers have their energy tariffs audited.

Purchasing a green energy certified tariff helps to, as stated, reduce the environmental impact associated with your home energy use while: creating additional environmental benefits that would not have happened without your support; supporting electricity suppliers who have been audited to ensure they deliver on promised benefits, and supporting investment in renewable energy in the UK and creating a greener future. The above information was provided by

In its most simplest form, the green tariffs can be explained thus; you, the customer selects a tariff, each tariff is CERTIFIED by an independent panel, each tariff is matched with renewable energy from energy company’s stock, each tariff offers additional environmental benefits, such as green funds, energy efficient measures and carbon offsets.

There is a growing band of people in the UK who are working towards a better future by choosing certified green energy tariffs. Unlike uncertified tariffs, certified green energy tariffs are guaranteed to provide additional benefits that wouldn’t happen with your support. For example some green energy tariffs donate money to charities or to trust funds, in-house or external, established to invest in new renewable projects-in the main at community level. They might also deliver support to schemes that deliver energy efficiency benefits. Energy suppliers can also purchase “credits” to offset the emissions from the generation of electricity. As most of us are aware everyday actions such as driving a car, heating a home or flying, consume energy and produce carbon dioxide emission. Avoiding and reduction those emissions as much as possible, (carbon offsetting), is a way of compensating for them by making an equivalent carbon dioxide saving elsewhere.

The scheme governance is run by an independent panel of experts who are qualified to assess the range of green energy tariffs in the market. Ofgem the government regulator of gas and electricity markets in the UK, also supports the scheme. The scheme explained can be found at  The key aims of the guideline is for suppliers to be transparent, tariffs need to be clear and consistent with public understanding and expectations as to what constitutes green supply. Evidence of supply, suppliers will need to have and retain evidence for duration of the relevant compliance period, additionally customers choosing a green tariff need to be able to be satisfied that their support is contributing to additional environmental benefits. Finally accreditation, suppliers who have signed up to the guidelines will be required to agree and develop an accreditation scheme within given time periods. Additional information can be found at the above websites.

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Energy Company NumbersView all posts by Energy Company Numbers
Energy Company Numbers is a telephone number directory service dedicated to helping UK consumers keep in touch with their energy suppliers.


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