Black Friday causes carbon chaos! OVO Energy encourages Brits to go green this Black Friday

25 November 2020

  • Black Friday and the busy Christmas shopping period have a huge impact on the environment, with as many as 82,000 delivery vans on roads, spitting out thousands of tonnes of carbon into the atmosphere
  • Online shopping on Black Friday in 2020 is predicted to generate 429,000 tonnes of carbon – it’s the equivalent of the weight of 61,308 elephants, or 435 return flights between London and New York*
  • OVO Energy is bucking the trend this year, instead encouraging Brits to Go Green this Black Friday, rewarding new members with a £50 gift card (see terms and conditions) to connect with nature through the National Trust
  • OVO Energy offers tips and tricks on how to shop more sustainably this festive season

Black Friday - now one of the busiest shopping days in the UK - is responsible for generating huge carbon emissions, thanks to billions of emails sent and thousands of deliveries being made up and down the country, causing a negative impact on the environment.

Online sales from Black Friday in 2020 is predicted to generate 429,000 tonnes of carbon with this figure rising year on year - the equivalent of 435 return flights between London and New York*.

To highlight the negative impact Black Friday is having on the environment, OVO Energy - the UK’s largest independent energy provider - is asking the nation to think more sustainably this year. Unlike other companies inundating their customers with deals to buy things they may not really need, OVO Energy is offering new members a £50 gift card this Black Friday to spend at National Trust, encouraging more people to connect with nature.

Panos Karouzos, Commercial Director, OVO Energy added: “At OVO Energy, we believe that together we can help combat the climate crisis by making small, everyday changes at home to reduce carbon and our impact on the environment. We know that mass consumerism days like Black Friday are having a negative impact on the planet - whether that’s through lorry emissions, unsustainable packaging, or simply sending an email - which is why we’re encouraging our new members to think of their carbon footprint and go green this Black Friday.”

As we head into one of the busiest periods ever for online shopping, OVO Energy shares its top tips and tricks on finding the perfect gifts with smaller carbon footprints:

  1. Buy pre-loved - ‘Pre-loved’ doesn’t necessarily mean old and worn; giving vintage, unique presents can be even more meaningful than picking up a new item. Perhaps your loved-one has a retro sense of style, with an eye for shirts from the 1950s. Or, if they’re a bookworm, they might cherish a vintage edition from their favourite author. Charity shops on your local high street can be treasure troves for eco-friendly gifts – but if you can’t get out of the house this winter, you could also try eBay, Depop, Vinted, and Oxfam’s online emporium.
  2. Get something sustainably made - If you can’t find the perfect gift second-hand, try finding a gift that’s plastic-free and sustainably made. For clothing, look for items made from naturally-derived fibres like linen, hemp, and Tencel. Outdoor adventurers will love gifts from Patagonia, the activewear brand that uses renewable energy and recycled fabrics to create their clothes. Homely rugs from the National Trust are also made from the recycled end cuts of yarn. Bamboo – in its raw, unprocessed form – is also great in things like homewares. And if you’re looking for toys, there are tons of wooden options, to avoid all that carbon-guzzling plastic.
  3. Don’t rush - These days, you can make a purchase on your smartphone in seconds. While it’s convenient, our online shopping habits are fuelling a culture of buying objects only to return them. The sad fact is that 20% of items bought online and then returned end up languishing in landfill, because they can’t be resold. Avoid adding to this problem by only making purchases you’re pretty sure about. Don’t be hurried – if you want to be sustainable, it’s important to make the best and most informed choice, not the quickest.
  4. Get crafty - If you want to opt out of shopping altogether, and save yourself some cash in the process, there’s nothing better than making a gift yourself. Perhaps you’re a talented baker, and you could whip up a tray of brownies – or maybe you could write your loved-one a meaningful letter that they’ll cherish forever. You could try your hand at making beeswax candles, scented soap, a terrarium, or a chunky knitted blanket.
  5. Gift the gift of zero waste lifestyle - Help remind any less eco-friendly relatives of their own everyday environmental impact by giving them useful, reusable items. A stylish water bottle, a tote bag, or a bamboo cutlery and toothbrush set could encourage them to break their habits and go plastic-free. Beauty lovers might appreciate the gift of reusable make-up wipes or homemade face masks. The Zero Waste Cookbook is a great gift for any cooks in your life, being full of tips on how to make your food go further.

For more tips and advice on shopping more sustainably, visit the OVO Energy blog:




Terms & conditions

Promoter: OVO Energy Limited, incorporated in England and Wales under company number 06890795 and whose registered office is at OVO Energy, 1 Rivergate, Temple Quay, Bristol BS1 6ED.

What’s the offer?

We will give you a £50 gift card to redeem against membership, shopping and holidays with the National Trust (England, Wales and Northern Ireland) when you join us directly via See for more details about how your gift card can be used, gift card terms and conditions and any exclusions which may apply.

When you’ll get the gift card

You’ll get an e-mail containing a link to validate your gift card within 60 days of coming on supply. You’ll then be sent another e-mail containing your code. It is your responsibility to ensure that the details you have provided to us are correct. Your gift card will be valid for 24 months.

How long is the offer open for?

The offer is available to new customers who sign up for a fixed tariff plan with OVO on our website between midnight on the 25th November and 11.59pm on 30th November 2020.

Who’s eligible?

This offer is only open to you if:

  1. You are a new OVO Energy customer who has signed up via
  2. You have joined on a fixed term plan
  3. You have successfully completed the on-line sign up process and received confirmation of your sign up to OVO.

You won’t be eligible for the gift card if:

  • you do not come onto supply with OVO Energy and/or do not agree to our terms and conditions and privacy policy
  • you breach your obligations under these Terms or our Core Terms and Conditions
  • You have any unpaid debts on your account; and/or
  • you sign up through an affiliate website, such as Top Cashback or through our “Refer a Friend” programme.

Anything else I should know?

National Trust gift cards are not valid for use with National Trust for Scotland. The gift card is non-exchangeable and non-transferable and there is no cash alternative or alternative prize available. This offer may not be combined with any other promotional offer. You should keep your gift card code safe until you wish to use it as , if you lose your gift card code we may not be able to provide it to you again.

We reserve the right to remove or temporarily suspend the offer if, in our reasonable opinion, we suspect any breach of these rules.

If you leave OVO Energy within 30 days of your supply start date, you won’t receive a gift card.

If OVO Energy deems in its discretion that a participant is ineligible for any reason, OVO Energy reserves the right to withhold the gift card.

OVO Energy reserves the right to amend these Terms and Conditions at any time.

The terms and conditions are subject to English Law and you submit to the exclusive jurisdiction of the courts of England unless you’re a resident of Ireland or Scotland, in which case you may also bring proceedings in Ireland or Scotland (as applicable).

About OVO Energy

OVO Energy was founded in 2009 and redesigned the energy experience to be fair, effortless, green and simple for all customers. Today OVO Energy and its Retail partners serve nearly 5 million customers, all striving to deliver more affordable clean energy for everyone. OVO is on a mission through its sustainability strategy Plan Zero to tackle the most important issue of our time; the climate crisis, by bringing our customers with us on the journey towards zero carbon living. OVO Energy has committed to being a net zero carbon business and achieve bold science-based carbon reduction targets by 2030, while helping members halve their carbon footprint at the same time.