androidCreated with Sketch. angle-left2Created with Sketch. angle-right2Created with Sketch. appleCreated with Sketch. blogCreated with Sketch. envelopeCreated with Sketch. facebookCreated with Sketch. github_24 Icon/contact/chat/ic_chat_24Created with Sketch. Icon/electricity/electricity/ic_electricity_24Created with Sketch. Icon/energy/ic_energy_24Created with Sketch. Icon/gas/gas/ic_gas_24Created with Sketch. Icon/home/ic_home_24Created with Sketch. Icon/lost-search/ic_lost-search_24Created with Sketch. Icon/device/phone/ic_phone_24Created with Sketch. ic_solid-arrow-left_24 ic_solid-arrow-right_24 ic_spinner_24 Icon/profile/ic_username_24Created with Sketch. cabCreated with Sketch. calculatorCreated with Sketch. credit-cardCreated with Sketch. envelopeCreated with Sketch. folder-openCreated with Sketch. homeCreated with Sketch. laptopCreated with Sketch. ovoCreated with Sketch. pagelinesCreated with Sketch. phoneCreated with Sketch. smartmeterCreated with Sketch. toggle-onCreated with Sketch. linkedinCreated with Sketch. plusCreated with Sketch. stackoverflow_24 star2Created with Sketch. star-halfCreated with Sketch. twitterCreated with Sketch. youtubeCreated with Sketch. forum legacy-icon-communities-exit

Why pirates were energy saving pioneers

By James Fritz Friday 19 September 2014

Why pirates were energy saving pioneers

The golden age of pirates was surprisingly progressive. They were accepting of gay marriage, had no glass ceiling for women and even had widespread health insurance to compensate for all those peg-legs and eye-patches. That’s why every year the world gathers together as a family, hang decorations and exchange gifts in celebration of that great old holiday - international Talk Like A Pirate Day! 

In cel-arrr-bration, we’ve put together some (very tenuous) reasons why pirates were the energy saving heroes of the past, giving everyone at OVO a rather flimsy excuse to talk about them all day.  

1. They were big fans of wind power

OVO have a few things in common with pirates.  

  • We’re adventurous. 
  • We have a strong Bristol heritage.
  • We’re very massive fans of wind energy.

Many pirates got everywhere using the power of wind, meaning zero pollution. A successful pirate ship relied on being fast and light, and would be powered by several sails. Ok, so the petrol engine hadn’t been invented yet, giving them very little choice. But still. Good on them. 

Hoist the mainsails!

2. When they couldn’t use wind power, they used manpower

Not all pirates had to sail by the good grace of the wind . Many used galleys instead, giant row-boats powered by dozens of men. It allowed them to sneak up on their enemies as they were able to sail against the wind. Although it wouldn’t have been very fun for those rowing, it does tick all our boxes as a real green way of getting from A to B. Heave! 

3. They used energy-efficient heating;

You’re on your ship, slap bang in the middle of the chilliest of the seven seas, with a gale a blowin’ and old Jack Frost leaving icicles on your cutlass. What do you do to stay warm?

Sadly it doesn’t make much sense to start a ruddy great fire on a boat made of wood, which thankfully that saves the environment from any nasty pollutants. And it’s not very appealing cuddling up for body heat when your crewmate is sporting a hook for a hand. So what did pirates do to keep warm? 

Why, drink rum of course! Lovely, hangover-inducing, non-greenhouse gas producing rum. A most excellently green way of staying warm.

4. They had green burials

Green burials are on the rise. There are now nearly 300 burial grounds in the UK as more and more environmentally conscious folk do away with cremation, coffins, embalming and gravestones and inter their loved ones in unmarked conservation sites so that their bodies can be recycled naturally.

Pirates, however, were way ahead of the curve, burying their dead at sea (where else). No fuss, no expense, no carbon footprint.

5. They loved to recycle

Pirates were adept at taking things they found and putting them to good use. If something could be re-used, they’d re-use it. In many ways they were the first great recyclers.

I mean, so what if they called it ‘looting’?

O​VO​ Energy Ltd, registered office 1 Rivergate Temple Quay Bristol, BS1 6ED, company no. 06890795 registered in England and Wales, VAT No. 100119879

Additional terms and conditions
Please see below for full terms and conditions on 33% renewable electricity, 3% interest rewards, exit fees and saving claims.


1Monthly cost - Representative monthly direct debit costs based on a non-economy-7, dual-fuel, medium user (3100 kWhs elec. and 12500 kWhs gas) paying in advance by direct debit, including online discount.  All rates correct as of 06/06/2017, but may go up or down.

2Weekly cost - Representative weekly costs based on a non-economy-7, dual-fuel, medium user (3100 kWhs elec. and 12500 kWhs gas).  All rates correct as of 06/06/2017, but may go up or down.

3Pay Monthly Savings claims: Saving based on the estimated annual cost of OVO Two year fixed tariff for a non-economy-7, dual-fuel, medium user (3100 kWhs elec. and 12500 kWhs gas) paying monthly in advance by direct debit, including online discount. Comparisons made against the average of the Big 6 standard variable tariffs with equivalent features. All rates correct as of 04/10/2017.“The Big 6” are British Gas, Scottish Power, SSE, Npower, E.ON and EDF.

4Pay As You Go Savings are based on the average estimated annual costs for new PAYG OVO customers quoted through the OVO website (based on household and/or consumption information provided by those customers), compared to their current supplier and tariff. Comparisons taken between 01/01/2016 and 11/10/16. Incl VAT. Actual savings may vary according to your current supplier or tariff, individual tariff options, household information, consumption and location. 

We include almost twice as much renewable electricity as the national average: At least 33% of electricity in all of our tariffs comes from renewable sources. The national average, according to Ofgem as at March 2014 was 16.7%. For more information please visit this page.

33% of your electricity comes from renewable sources: 33% renewable electricity as standard as of 1st April 2015. Renewable electricity is generated from wind, solar, geothermal, wave, tidal, hydro, biomass, landfill gas, sewage treatment plant gas and biogas.

3% interest: Calculated at 3% per year for customers paying by advance direct debit.  The OVO Interest Reward is paid monthly based on   number of days in credit and the amount left in your account after you’ve paid your bill,  and the credit balance on which you can earn the OVO Interest Reward is capped. Terms apply:

95% of new customers save when switching to OVO: Savings based on the average estimated annual costs for all new OVO customers quoted through the OVO website, compared to their current supplier and tariff. Comparisons taken between 01/05/2016 and 11/10/16. Incl VAT.

94% of surveyed customers would recommend us: OVO conducted a survey of their customers in between 1st January 2016 and 15th April 2016. Out of 15,312 customers who responded, over 94% rated OVO 6+ when asked 'how likely would you be to recommend us to a friend and family, on a scale of 1 to 10.

Britain's top rated energy provider: Britain's top rated energy provider in the Which? 2015 satisfaction survey. Survey conducted in October 2015. Awarded in January 2016.

uSwitch's Energy Supplier of the Year: OVO energy was voted and awarded  'Energy Supplier of the year' and best for: Overall Customer Satisfaction, Most Likely to be Recommended, Value for Money, Best Deal for You, Customer Service, Billing Services, Energy Efficiency, Meter Services, Online Services, Green Services and Transfer Process. OVO Energy scored a 96% customer satisfaction score.

Which?: Achieved the highest score of 78% in the Which? Satisfaction Survey conducted in September and October 2016.

* EV - Everywhere, full terms and conditions:

* OVO SolarStore (Beta), full terms and conditions:

Pay Monthly unit rates

PAYG unit rates

Read more Read less

Like most websites OVO Energy uses cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you continue without changing your settings, we'll assume that you are happy to receive all cookies on this site. Accept and Close