30 Mar 2015
Everyone will get an opportunity for their question to be asked, questions will be submitted before the event.
Through this event, we aim to:
– Encourage young people/first time voters to engage
– Gain a better understanding of the l…ocal candidates stance on environmental issues
– Encourage lively debate and awareness of the issues
– Give you an opportunity to question your potential MP’s
The event is sponsored by Community Energy South – a new umbrella group for local community energy groups across Sussex and surrounding counties.
Ticket Prices : £5 and concession £3
Doors and bar open: 7.00pm
Deadline for submitting questions: 7.30pm
Debate starts: 8.00pm (prompt – please be in your seats!)
BHESCo will be setting up an Energy Desk at the Friends Meeting House, Ship Street, Brighton on Saturday 17th January.
We will be giving expert advice about reducing energy costs, including cost effective ways to keep your home warm, checking whether you are on the right tarrif, and what support you can expect from your supplier.
Bring along your fuel bills so we can check them and see if you are paying a fair amount, and if not we will suggest ways to put this right.
Alongside our energy desk, in the next room, will be the Repair Cafe. If you have something that needs repairing, such as clothing, equipment or bicycles, and you are thinking of throwing it away, bring it along and get help and advice about giving it a new lease of life.
BHESCo’s Energy Desk will run from 10am – 2pm. The Repair Cafe runs from 11.00 am – 1.00pm
With the fossil fuel industry up to capacity, the government has ignored the obvious alternative and decided to hand out tax breaks for dirty gas, oil and nuclear power, despite overwhelming scientific and economic evidence of the benefits of renewable alternatives.
So, the air gets more polluted and unnecessarily cold homes continue to contribute to the misery and deaths of thousands of vulnerable people each winter.
We have the resources and the research, and most significantly the will to overcome the energy challenges we face in the UK. Within the space of a year 15 community groups in Sussex alone have joined forces to support energy savings and the development of locally generated renewable energy. But those in power are sidestepping the obvious solution diverting taxpayers funds to uneconomic investments.
Instead, the government offers tax breaks for the big energy companies to build more fossil fuel plants and new nuclear. The autumn statement promised £15billion for roads. It overhauls stamp duty ignoring the opportunity to link it to environmentally friendly buildings. Even the flood defense proposals are inadequate, according to experts. The treasury continues to endorse shale gas production, despite overwhelming public concern about safety and the impacts on land, water and air, including the emission of even more greenhouse gases.
As taxpayers we are right to have a say in where our money goes, and insist on value for money on government spending. One may ask how this major investment in roads and tax breaks for fossil fuels will meet the immediate need to address fuel poverty and its consequent pressure on the NHS. Furthermore, how will it encourage the generation of locally controlled renewable energy which has been proven to reduce energy prices in Germany and is supported by millions of people across the country as a way of taking back control of our own energy supply and improving energy security?
Founder Director Kayla Ente has visited St Nicholas Church and Varndean School over the past month, emphasizing the fact that if you haven’t switched suppliers once your fixed contract expires, it is likely that you are paying too much on your energy bills.
At Varndean School, Kayla spoke to 20 parents about ways to prevent and treat damp, helped parents switch tariffs and helped resolve a problem a parent had with a prepayment meter. An average of £200 per household was saved just by switching energy supplier. This can make a contribution to reducing fuel debt, providing more disposable income for families.
A week later BHESCO had a stand at the AMAZE Info Fair, where Kayla spoke to parents of children with Special Education Needs and disabilities about their energy usage, advising some about whether they were on the best tariff and about energy savings measures they can take in their homes.
More recently, BHESCo ran a workshop in conjunction with National Energy Action at The Space Place at the Hanover Community Centre. While the ladies were busy sewing draught excluders out of beautiful recycled fabric, BHESCo was providing knowledgeable advice and help with their energy bills. Again, an average of £200 per year was saved on energy bills by switching to a lower tariff.
Forthcoming events on 15 December include a lunchtime presentation at AGE UK for front line workers, and on 15 January a workshop for frontline workers from Brighton & Hove County Council at the Brighthelm Centre and on 13 January at the Citizens Advice Bureau in Hove.
Look out, too, for the Older People’s forum which BHESCO are hosting at their base at the Brighthelm centre on 22 January.
Price comparison website uSwitch, announced that almost four million UK households (14%) owe money to their energy supplier. Increasing gas and electricity prices over the winter pushed UK households into debt at an average amount of £128 per household. Despite the mild winter, bills are £53 higher than at the start of 2013. The report highlights households are facing increased pressure to meet their rising fuel bills with the number of household falling into energy debt rising dramatically. It was also reported that the average household energy bill is 168% higher than in 2004, an increase of £472. Read the full report from uSwitch on their website.
At BHESCo, we are working hard to alleviate this problem by inviting the Brighton and Hove community to reduce their consumption and therefore expenditure on energy, making their homes more comfortable and energy efficient. Monetary savings can be made on energy bills by switching supplier, ensuring that you are on the tariff that meets your requirements. If you are in debt to your energy supplier and cannot switch, we may be able to help through BHESCo’s Fuel Poverty Fund.
Homes can also be made more energy efficient by installing simple energy saving initiatives, such as draught excluders and energy saving light bulbs. The Green Deal Home Improvement Fund is a way that you can reduce your energy bills for less! Find out more about this programme here.