Chris Houghton, CEO Energy Retail at OVO Energy, on why OVO Energy is taking action against burning fossil fuels:
In 2009 we set out to become an energy company that would put people and the planet first; driven by the belief that there is a better way. We’ve focused on creating the energy system of the future - a future that is going to be defined by renewable energy.
We’ve grown from a start-up to the UK’s largest independent energy supplier with more than 850,000 customers and, whilst our mission hasn’t changed, our work is far from over.
Although around 176 countries globally have clean energy policies, the world still relies on oil, gas and coal to satisfy most of its electricity needs. UN climate scientists believe that continued use of fossil fuels will have irreversible impacts for people and ecosystems alike.
We recognise that there is no one way to solve a global problem like climate change. But we believe that we can help most by making it easy for people to choose renewable energy - and by investing in technology that will make sure that 100 per cent renewable electricity can be 100 per cent reliable, 100 per cent of the time.
What is renewable energy?
When we talk about renewable energy, we mean electricity that comes from 100 per cent renewable and sustainable sources like wind generated off the Scottish coast or solar from sunny Spain. Meaning no coal, no nuclear, and no mysterious ‘other’ sources like diesel generators.
In fact, we guarantee that everyone who chooses OVO Energy – whether they’ve made the choice to be a renewable energy customer or not – receives at least 33 per cent renewable electricity from us. And none of the remainder comes from coal, oil or nuclear sources. Because we’re serious about making energy simple, fair and transparent, we give all our customers the option to upgrade to 100 per cent renewable electricity, regardless of the type of tariff they are on.
Over the past three years, we’ve managed to halve our CO2 emissions to be well below the national average when compared with other energy suppliers. It’s something we’re incredibly proud of and we’ve been able to achieve this with the help of our fantastic customers who agree that renewable energy is something worth investing in.
Is it an investment?
Every OVO Energy customer has the option to upgrade to 100 per cent renewable electricity for £5 a month - whenever they want, for as long as they want, on whatever plan is best for them. While there may be cheaper green deals around, our green add-on is more flexible than other offerings and sustainably priced. In addition, we’re investing in forward-looking technologies that will enable more people to affordably and reliably power their lives through renewables, whether the wind is blowing or the sun is shining.
We’ve been in the energy business for nearly a decade and we continue to deliver on our promise to make energy simple, flexible and sustainable for the long-term – while still providing the award-winning customer service for which we’re known.
We want to be a company that makes it as easy as possible for people to use their collective power to drive real change. If more people choose renewable energy, it will send a clear message to investors and the people generating energy to look for greener, less expensive and simpler ways to get it from renewable sources rather than fossil fuels.
How will technology make renewable energy more reliable?
At OVO Energy we're combining the human ingenuity of our teams with the latest in energy technology. We’re focused on maximising the benefits of energy storage devices like electric vehicles, home batteries and electric heaters when they’re paired with a smart meter. Nearly 40 per cent of our customers now have smart meters and will soon be able to optimise smart technology to take energy out of their storage devices to power their home or sell back to the National Grid for money.
Of course, there is more to be done. Human progress is empowered by increasing energy consumption. Our vision is that we can move the conversation from using less energy to helping people understand that there’s a better way to power up that will ultimately mean they can use as much energy as they want while safeguarding our planet’s future.
OVO 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, 3-5% 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 2/3/2018, 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 22/11/2017, 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 2/3/2018.“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.
OVO Interest Rewards: Interest Rewards are paid on credit balances of customers paying by monthly Direct Debit. It is calculated at 3% in your first year, 4% in your second year and 5% in your third year (and every year thereafter) if you pay by Direct Debit. Interest Rewards are paid monthly based on the number of days you’re in credit and the amount left in your account after you’ve paid your bill. Full terms apply: https://www.ovoenergy.com/terms
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.
uSwitch's Energy Supplier of the Year 2017: 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.
* EV - Everywhere, full terms and conditions: https://www.ovoenergy.com/ev-everywhere/terms
* OVO SolarStore (Beta), full terms and conditions: https://www.ovoenergy.com/ovo-solar-store/terms