Saturday, 12 March 2011

30,000 energy customers become guardians of the rainforest in a unique CO2 saving initiative

30,000 Brits this morning, woke up to not another household bill on their mats but a certificate saying they're the proud guardians of an acre of rainforest each, thanks to Ovo energy and rainforest charity Cool Earth.

The rainforest rescue scheme, sees new comer to the energy industry, Ovo, prevent the release of more CO2 into the atmosphere per customer, in one single action than any other energy provider. The initiative is the first of its kind and has been spearheaded by the energy company, Ovo and Europe's fastest growing environmental charity, Cool Earth.

 Each acre of rainforest protected against deforestation prevents a staggering 260 tonnes in CO2 emissions per customer. The average person emits around 11 tonnes of carbon dioxide per year according to the Carbon Trust. This means Ovo bill payers are currently protecting an area of rainforest the size of Manchester, preventing nearly 8 million tonnes in CO2 emissions. That's around the same amount of CO2 that would be saved by putting solar panels on every household in Britain according to Cool Earth.

The innovative partnership has been praised by the UK's leading climate change scientist, Professor James Lovelock who says; "It's great to see an energy company taking a global approach to climate change."

Every time a new customer switches to Ovo, another acre is protected in their name. Ovo customer, Maria Guest, from Southampton, was the first to get her acre; "We're so pleased we switched to Ovo. It's great to know we're not only saving money but that we're doing something really practical to help save the environment too."

Matthew Owen, Director of the charity Cool Earth, whose supporters include, David Attenborough, Vivienne Westwood and Ricky Gervais, highlights that protecting rainforest is key to cutting CO2 emissions; "Offsets won't save the world - we need to set our sights much higher. By preventing 260 tonnes of CO2 emissions for every one of its customers, Ovo is in a green league of its own. With deforestation creating a fifth of the world's carbon emissions, in one single action, Ovo is tackling climate change from the ground up and setting a new standard in what it means to be green. "

Ovo Managing Director Stephen Fitzpatrick adds; "As an energy supplier, we really had to think about our effect on the planet, so what Ovo is doing in partnership with Cool Earth, is harnessing the power of our customers and using it to make the most significant positive impact on our environment that we could find possible. Will our customers approve of their rainforest acre? We think so."

 An acre of rainforest is also sponsored in the name of new customers who sign up to the simple Ovo tariff.

View Ovo's rainforest website

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