May 2015

22 May 2015

Winchester City Council Local Plan Committee on 1 June 2015 has been cancelled. The meeting to look at the issues raised by responses to their consultation, and consider any proposed amendments to the Plan, will now happen in September.

22 May 2015

Do your part to ensure a strong agreement on climate change – tell world leaders to take climate action now.

21 May 2015

Join WinACC at the Climate Coalition's lobby of parliament - a day of action, solidarity and celebration of all the things we love.

20 May 2015

Solar PV Panels

A solar photovoltaic, or solar PV, system generates electricity from daylight. You can use this free electricity in your home instead of using electricity from your energy company and so reduce your energy bills. The government also pays you for the amount of electricity that the panels produce, whether you use the energy or not!

How solar PV works

Solar PV panels are usually mounted on a sunny pitched roof, preferably south-facing and with little or no shading from trees or other buildings.  Panels come in a variety of types, with the most efficient (and expensive) models generating up to 50% more power than the cheapest models.

The electricity generated from a typical solar PV system will offset at least half of the electricity demand of your home through the course of a year.  The generating capacity of a solar PV system is measured in kilowatts (kW) and for each of kW of capacity installed you should generate around 1000kWh (units) of electricity each year and save around 600kg of carbon dioxide emissions.

An additional electricity meter is fitted, but this one measures how much electricity you generate rather than use.  

Generating money as well as electricity

The government pays you for each unit of electricity your solar PV system generates. The current rate is 14p for each unit, whether you use that electricity yourself or export it to the national grid for someone else to use instead.  This payment is called the Feed-in Tariff, or FiT. It is index-linked and guaranteed for 20 years.  As well as the 14p per unit for the electricity the system generates, you also receive 4.77p per unit of electricity you export to the grid. This amount is usually “deemed” to be half of the amount of electricity generated.

To receive this payment the panels must be installed by an accredited MCS installer. It's also worth noting that the top FiT rate is only payable if your house has an EPC rating of D or better.

PV systems are very reliable and need little or no regular maintenance.  Panels are generally self-cleaning if installed at a typical pitch.  Owners of PV systems should learn to make the most of their free power by running power-hungry electrical appliances such as washing machines and dishwashers whilst the sun is shining, as far as is practical.

WinACC January 2015

18 May 2015

Lift-sharing is a great and convenient way to cut your carbon footprint. Liftshare.com helps you do that. Free.

18 May 2015

What's more expensive? A car or a bicycle? Obvious? So how much more expensive are cars compared to bicycles?

18 May 2015

What's more expensive? A car or a bicycle? Obvious? So how much more expensive are cars compared to bicycles?

14 May 2015

Help make politicians of all parties understand that climate change is the most important issue they face. 2015 is a crucial year for the future of humanity, leading up to the Paris conference in December. This is what you can do.

7 May 2015

Winchester City Council commissions a report each year on the Council's own carbon footprint. The September 2014 report covers the year April 2013-March 2014.

On March 2015, the Council's Cabinet received a paper on asset management, which included an interesting appendix by the Council's energy manager about the Council's use of power.

3 May 2015

The Church of England and the Roman Catholic Church agree that Christians must act on climate change.

The Church of England’s lead bishop on the environment shares the Vatican statement’s clear view that climate change is largely caused by human activity and mitigating it is a ‘moral and religious imperative for humanity’. The Bishop of Salisbury, Nicholas Holtam, said: 

“Climate change is the greatest moral challenge of our day, for people of all faiths and people of no faith. 

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