100% renewable electricity that’s 100% reliable, 100% of the time – come rain or shine.
As the UK’s largest independent energy supplier, we’re helping to combat climate change in two ways.
Firstly, we’re making it easy for people to choose renewable electricity. And secondly, we’re investing in technology to build a sustainable energy system that’s fit for the future. It’s how we plan to achieve 100% renewable electricity that’s 100% reliable, 100% of the time – whether the wind is blowing or the sun is shining.
In 2015, we became the first mainstream energy supplier to ditch dirty coal. Now we’re giving every customer at least 33% renewable electricity1, as standard. Or 100% if they upgrade with our Green Energy add-on2.
However, we don’t simply offer 100% renewable electricity like many companies. We also use smart technology – from revolutionising old storage heaters to turning lamp posts into electric vehicle chargers – to improve the UK’s energy infrastructure and balance our national grid. So that one day our country can be solely and reliably powered by renewables.
Balancing the National Grid is all about matching the supply of electricity to demand, second by second.
Think about millions of people watching a football match at the same time – this creates a big spike in demand. If the National Grid doesn’t have enough electricity available, screens will go off and Britain might ‘blackout’.
Likewise, if there’s too much electricity, there can be power surges, which can damage equipment and cause electrical fires in our homes.
Renewable electricity generation is, of course, a good thing. But its growth makes balancing the National Grid a little trickier because sources, like wind, are unpredictable. The wind blows when it wants to – not when we want to make electricity from it.
Our solution? We’re investing in grid balancing software and storage technology, like electric vehicles and home batteries, to store electricity when it’s abundant – and release it back to the National Grid when demand is high. It’s the smart way to balance the National Grid, and increase renewable electricity generation.
Good question – when we talk about renewable energy, we mean electricity from 100% renewable and sustainable sources like wind generated off the Scottish coast or solar from sunny Spain. That means no coal, no nuclear, no dirty diesel and no mysterious ‘other’ in our fuel mix.
Yes – all our plans include at least 33% renewable electricity1, as standard. But if you want to be even ‘greener’, we’ve made it easy for you to upgrade to 100% renewable electricity for just £5 a month with our Green Energy add-on.2
It’s fair, simple and transparent – you just add it whenever you want, on whatever plan is best for you
Yes. We’ve managed to halve our CO2 emissions over the last 3 years – and we’re pretty chuffed about it. Especially as we’re now well below the UK national average compared to other energy suppliers.
This would have been impossible without the help of our fantastic customers who chose renewable energy, and decided that a green-energy future is worth investing in.
It’s not possible for any supplier to guarantee that. Why? Because all electricity generation – dirty and green alike – gets pooled into the National Grid.
Think about the National Grid like a motorway where cars (electricity) come on at different junctions (various sources) and leave at different exits (homes and offices). Once electricity is in the grid, there’s no way of knowing where it came from. By choosing renewable energy, you’re making a positive contribution by literally putting more ‘green’ cars on the ‘energy motorway’ – and helping us to progress towards a cleaner, greener future.
These ‘green cars’ are essentially certificates (Renewable Energy Guarantee of Origin certificates, and Guarantee of Origin certificates) that we buy on behalf of every customer who chooses 100% renewables.
These prove that the energy we’re contributing to the National Grid is in line with what our 100% renewable electricity customers have bought. So although it’s not possible to know whether the electricity that ends up in your home is from a renewable source – we can guarantee that every unit you use will be replaced on the network by a unit of renewably sourced electricity.
Every OVO customer has the option to upgrade to 100% renewable electricity2 for £5 a month – whenever they want, for as long as they want, on whatever plan is best.
Although you might find a cheaper green deal elsewhere, our Green Energy add-on is sustainably priced and uniquely flexible – you simply add add it or drop it, whenever you like. We also plant 5 trees a year for you, as part of our I Dig Trees3 initiative to further reduce carbon emissions. In addition, we invest in the types of forward-looking technologies that will enable more people to affordably and reliably power their lives through renewables.
The price of our Green Energy add-on reflects what it costs us to buy certificates of origin, plant trees, and invest profits back into technology to help us build 100% renewable electricity2 that’s 100% reliable, 100% of the time.
Of course, not everyone has the same budget or priorities. That’s why we offer 33% renewable electricity1 as standard on all our plans too.
All our customers can upgrade to 100% renewable electricity for £5 a month with our Green Energy add-on2. It might not be the cheapest deal around, but it’s competitive, uniquely flexible, and sustainable for the long-term.
Just offering 100% renewables as standard like some companies may seem enticing, but we have our eye on the long-term future of our world.
That’s why, instead of trying to be the cheapest around, we focus on pricing competitively and sustainably. Then we invest our profits back into technology that promotes renewable energy generation. And helps build an energy system of the future. One that puts people and the planet first.
It’s just simpler. Rather than locking people into long contracts or charging different amounts each month depending on how much energy you’re using, we add a £5 flat monthly rate to your bill if you want 100% renewable with our Green Energy add-on1.
This accounts for the fact that you use a bit more energy in the winter than you do in the summer – and gives you the option to opt in and out when you choose, without having to switch to a new plan.
No. We don’t buy from fracking or shale gas producers.
There are still too many unknowns about the quality of fracked gas – and the impact it has on the environment and local communities – so we’re steering clear.
No – we can only offer 100% renewable electricity2.
We’d love to be able to offer renewable gas too, but technologies like anaerobic digestion (similar to building big compost heaps out of things like sewage, farm and food waste) can’t produce the quantity and quality we need.
A much more interesting question is, ‘How we can stop using gas altogether?’. It’s something we’re working hard to figure out. In fact, our own intelligent technology, such as battery storage devices and electric storage heaters paired with smart meters, are allowing us to rely on electricity more and more. This is the future and, one day, it will hopefully herald the end of gas-guzzling boilers and vehicles.
1 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.
2 If you’re signed up to Green Energy, we purchase renewable certificates for 100% of your electricity use from green sources such as wind, solar, geothermal, wave, tidal, hydro, biomass, landfill gas, sewage treatment plant gas and biogas. Please click here for more information.
3 We aim to plant 5 trees on your behalf in green spaces over the UK through our I Dig Trees programme. From April 2017 to March 2018 we're aiming to have planted at least 150,000 trees bringing the total number of trees planted to over 500,000 trees since 2015. Find out more about I Dig Trees, here: https://www.ovoenergy.com/i-dig-trees