Tom Melhuish 4 min read

What are the benefits of using green energy?

At COP 26, the United Nations Climate Change Conference held in Glasgow, the world’s countries have committed to limiting climate change to an increase of 1.5 degrees. The UK committed to reducing its greenhouse gases to net-zero by 2050.

As part of the journey towards net-zero, the UK needs to reduce greenhouse emissions by 78% compared with 1990 levels by 2035. To meet its climate obligations, the UK will require a vast increase in energy generation from sources that do not emit greenhouse gases. This is where Green Energy comes in.

What is Green Energy?

Green Energy is the generation of electricity from renewable sources. The current green energy sources used in the UK are:

  • Hydropower generation – Using the energy stored in fast-flowing rivers to generate electricity.
  • Solar generation – Using the energy in natural sunlight to generate electricity.
  • Wind generation – Using the energy in wind to generate electricity with turbines.
  • Nuclear energy – Using nuclear power stations to generate electricity.
  • Geothermal energy – Using the thermal energy of the earth’s crust to generate electricity or heat.
  • Tidal energy – Using the energy in the daily tidal movements of the sea to generate electricity.

The burning of natural gas for energy remains the UK’s largest source of electricity generation. Natural Gas is not a green energy source. When natural gas is burnt in power stations or in boilers, carbon dioxide is emitted into the atmosphere, contributing to global warming.

Compare business gas prices, and switch to a green energy supplier.

What makes green energy “Green”?

When it comes to the supply of electricity and gas to commercial properties, many green business energy tariffs are offered in the market. What a commercial energy supplier means by green differs from one supplier to another; here are the different ways a business electricity tariff can be green:

Carbon offset natural gas – The use of natural gas in boilers to heat business properties is common and directly emits carbon dioxide into the atmosphere. To make this process green, a business gas supplier will offset the carbon dioxide produced by their gas supply. Offsetting is usually achieved by purchasing carbon credits earned in environmental projects.

Biomethane – Natural gas that is produced sustainably using biomass energy. In biomass energy, anaerobic digestion converts waste from farms and landfills into biomethane – a sustainable form of natural gas. The biomethane produced in this process can be purchased as part of a business gas tariff.

Local green electricity generation – Suppliers will work to install a local green energy generator at your business property, such as commercial solar panels. The electricity generated by such a system can either be directly used by your business or sold back to the grid using the smart export guarantee scheme.

National green electricity generation – Suppliers commit to purchasing electricity used by your business from national green electricity generation sites, such as wind farms.

How important is it for businesses to switch to green energy?

In order for the UK to become carbon neutral, it’s going to be necessary for homes, businesses, and the government to take steps to reduce carbon emissions.

Moving to a green energy tariff for electricity and gas is an important step businesses can take to reduce their carbon footprint. Adopting a green business energy tariff is a step often taken as part of ISO 14001 accreditation.

Another step businesses take in improving their green credentials is to analyse and improve water efficiency.

What are the benefits of using green energy?

The benefits of a business adopting green energy are:

  • Lower the carbon footprint of business operations
  • Supports the renewables sector in the UK
  • Help the UK meet its climate commitments
  • Increase business energy independence
  • Reputational enhancement
  • Slows down climate change

Green energy generation is getting cheaper each year, so you can also make savings on business electricity rates.

List of green energy suppliers in the UK for businesses

Check out our guide to commercial energy suppliers to find those suppliers that offer green tariffs as part of their value proposition.

To find the best green energy deals for your business, use our tool to compare business energy prices to get tailored quotes for your business today.

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