We reached out to our customers to see all of the amazing things they do to make the world a cleaner, greener place. Some made large changes like installing a wind turbine or fitting solar panels, and some made smaller everyday changes like cutting out single-use plastic or growing their own vegetables. Here are some of their stories.
A sustainable house in the countryside
A man in a hard hat next to a river
A family sat in their garden
A woman sat in her garden
A woman stood next to a giant spoon
A woman stood in her garden
A man stood on a boat
A man smiling for the camera
A man stood in front of a pile of logs
A sustainable house in the countryside
A man in a hard hat next to a river
A family sat in their garden
A woman sat in her garden
A woman stood next to a giant spoon
A woman stood in her garden
A man stood on a boat
A man smiling for the camera
A man stood in front of a pile of logs

Mathew’s Story

In 2021, Mathew traded his sustainable house for a ship, which he will renovate to make it as green as possible.

For many years I have been dreaming of a sustainable and environmentally friendly lifestyle. I spent time making my house as energy efficient as it could be and installed solar panels with the FiT managed by Good Energy. I also bought an electric vehicle.

As with many businesses, Covid 19 has had a profound effect on my work. So, I took steps last year to reassess my lifestyle, which led me to buying a ship to make my new home!

Having enjoyed sailing and windsurfing for many years, buying a ship seemed the perfect choice. I am upset that I will be giving up a great setup with my home energy production, but I am glad that the new owners can benefit from my legacy.

I hope to build an array of innovative systems on my ship – focusing on solar, wind and other renewable energy sources so that I can live a comfortable, guilt free life. I also want to inspire others to make steps towards a green future.  I hope to document my progress and, hopefully, educate others in the process.

A man stood on a boat

John’s Story

John shares why he became a Good Energy customer, as well as other changes he has made to become more sustainable.

I have been a Good Energy customer for many years now, I chose them as one of the few providers that genuinely provide 100% renewable energy, and much of it produced locally to me in the South-West too.

I also installed some solar panels shortly after buying my house and use Good Energy to manage my Feed in Tariff.

Last year, I decided to investigate carbon offsetting our emissions for a year, and it was interesting, or perhaps shocking, to see what a big contribution my daily commute by car made to the total.

My 50 mile daily commute, even in an economical car, completely dwarfed the emissions from the rest of our household.

As a result I decided to switch to an electric car – we still have a second car that we use for longer trips, but the electric car is what we use for everyday journeys, and it has saved a ton of emissions – plus it’s great to drive!

​​Top sustainability tip: I’d encourage everyone to look into offsetting their emissions, as just going through the process of calculating your emissions can be eye opening.

Watch John’s testimonial now
Electric vehicle

Asha’s Story

Asha shares how she and her family are reducing their carbon footprint and living a more sustainable lifestyle.

I’m the first generation that went to school and was taught about the effect that humans are having on the planet. 30 years later, having a family of my own, my interest and concern about the ecosystem we live in has deepened.

Not only have we switched all our energy requirements to Good Energy, but we are trying to cut our consumption of single use plastic as much as possible, from water bottles to toothbrushes.

Reducing our plastic footprint means that I’m looking to outlets that provide seasonal, organic fruit and vegetables in boxes.

Another way we are trying to be carbon neutral is to offset our airplane/flying emissions by funding schemes to plant trees.

Any paper or envelopes we receive via the post or school (three of us are currently at or working in one) gets used again before being recycled. We are trying to reduce the amount of chemicals we use about the house for cleaning.

And, during lockdown, we have started growing our own fruit and veg!

A woman sat in her garden

Lesley’s Story

Lesley explains how having solar panels and saving water have led to her leading to a more sustainable life.

There are a few things I do to live life more sustainably.

I have solar panels that were fitted in 2012 and have just about paid for themselves already in electricity saving and FIT tariff payments.

In the garden I have a composter and a water butt. I also use grey water from washing my hands or doing the dishes.

I collect lots of things that would normally go in my rubbish bin and take them to my local TerraCycle collector, which reduces waste to landfill.

When boiling my kettle, I make sure I only use the right amount of water for my needs.

Before automatically turning on my heating I put on a jumper or socks first and even if I then need to turn it on, I warm up quicker so I can turn it off sooner.

My top tip: My number one tip to anyone starting out on their sustainability journey would be to ditch plastic. Use washable cotton face coverings instead of single use ones that contain plastic, and ditch wipes! They are both a menace to the environment.

A woman stood next to a giant spoon

Jay’s Story

Jay Croney lives with his family in Bristol. He shares how they strive to live a more sustainable life.

Jay and Kate, and their three children live in Bristol. As consumers, they understand the impact they have on the environment, and try their hardest to make it a positive one through the goods and services they purchase and through their lifestyle choices. That’s what led them to switch to Good Energy three and a half years ago.

“I’d suggest that everyone do their research into companies to see how ethical they are and whether they meet your expectations. We try to spend our money where it will make the most difference.” Said Jay.

“With Good Energy, we liked that they are an ethical company and that they could guarantee to match our use with 100% renewable electricity.”

When switching to renewables, the Croneys were willing to pay more, knowing they were investing in the future of the planet. But in reality, they’ve found their energy costs have dropped as they’ve become more planet aware.

“We are very mindful to turn off lights when we leave a room, switch off plugs sockets when not using them, and aim to not waste energy unnecessarily. Our children help out with all of this and we chat regularly about looking after the environment, watch programmes and read books together about it.” said Jay.

“We are very aware that renewable energy will help to drastically reduce the use and dependence of fossil fuels. By being a customer of Good Energy, we feel a part of the green revolution.”

A family sat in their garden

Andy’s Story

Andy and his family do a number of things to use less energy and help them to combat climate change.

So what am I doing to combat climate change?

  1. We switched to Good Energy, of course. This stemmed from a desire to move away from any of the “big six” but also to move to a company with much stronger environmental credentials.
  2. We fitted solar PV and solar thermal to help us to power our home and heat our water.
  3. We use a log burner. This reduces our use of gas enormously as we don’t have the heating on as much, and we also heat pans of water for cooking.
  4. As a family we have reduced our meat intake by about 75% if not more. My 14-year old daughter has gone vegetarian, and my 11-year old son is moving in that direction.
  5. I’m planning on collecting our neighbours’ compost so that it doesn’t have to be taken away in lorries by our local council (I call this compost miles!).
  6. I planted a native hedge this year (comprising 80+ plants of mainly yew, but also beech, hornbeam, bird cherry, crab apple, hawthorn, field maple and holly).
  7. My wife and I mainly cycle to work; I do 100 miles a week on my bike.

Thanks for sharing our story. I’m sure there’s more we actually do, but I’m equally sure there’s more we could be doing to reduce our impact.

A man stood in front of a pile of logs

Malcolm’s Story

Malcolm Crosby who lives in the Southern Uplands of Scotland, and he tells us about all of the changes he’s made to his property to be more sustainable.

My wife and I have been Good Energy customers since 2008, moving to you as one of the only genuinely renewable energy suppliers.

We installed a wind turbine at our home in 2005, have put in a number of energy saving measures since, including a rainwater harvesting system, solar thermal installation and greenhouse that provides a lot of heat.

Last year we installed 44 solar panels, as well as a pellet boiler that replaces our oil and gas central heating. We have also exchanged gas cooking for electric, and a diesel car for an electric one too.

You’ll see in the photograph above our turbine, solar thermal roof, greenhouses and rainwater harvesting tank, as well as trees that we use for some wood and kindling.

During our first year of solar generation, we reached the 10MWh estimated by our installers – meaning that our home is a net generator. And that is in the Southern Uplands of Scotland, which is not the sunniest part of the world!

My interest in renewable energy led to me joining the renewable energy team at the Forestry Commission, where I have worked for the last ten years. So not only do we use renewables at home, but I do it for a living as well, what more could you want!

A sustainable house in the countryside
A man smiling for the camera
A man in a hard hat next to a river

Justine’s Story

Justine tells us her tips for being more sustainable.

We have been Good Energy customers since 2012. I heard about the work you were doing via Ethical Consumer Magazine. It seemed such a simple and easy way to make a difference.

I strongly believe that the small actions individuals take give governments and companies confidence to make the system changes needed. No government wants to make changes too radical for the population. No company wants to miss the zeitgeist and be left behind. But companies like Good Energy are the ones ahead of the curve creating what will be needed years ahead of the mainstream.

My personal small actions started gradually years ago and then in 2015 I started a blog to share these. Littlegreenduckie.com covers minimalism, sustainability, food and volunteering. I write about a wide variety of personal actions from ethical banking to plastic free periods.

My other big passion is organic plastic free food. I volunteer and work at a shop that strongly matches these values, Get Loose, based at Hackney City Farm. We are trying to change the food system from the inside supporting organic food producers and enabling people to access organic food at a more affordable price. Seeing a person discover the shop for the first time and then become a regular customer is a wonderful thing. It gives many people huge satisfaction to be able to buy their staple food items in bulk and without plastic.

Justine’s top tip: Compost your food waste at home! It makes you really think about what you are throwing away, reducing waste. It reduces how much goes into landfill. It stops a reusable resource being wasted in landfill. It saves money and plastic as you can use the compost.

A woman stood in her garden

Amanda’s Story

Amanda Dudman from Buckinghamshire tells us how she’s trying to be more green.

I decided to look at each aspect of my life and work with the aim of doing one good thing (at least) for each one as a means to holistically address my carbon footprint and emissions in 2019 and into 2020 and beyond.  Here are some examples.

Holiday travel

I calculated my CO2 emissions and those of my siblings for airfares in 2019 and paid the fees to offset the carbon used (this transformed into trees planted and biomass clean energy burners in Africa); these were given as their Christmas presents which therefore contributed to my aim to influence others to do the same.

Home

(it’s old) – I replaced radiators to thermostatic (room by room basis as each is renovated going forwards) and the same with window restoration and replacement/insulation (I live in a conservation area so it’s not straight forward).

Work

I run my own micro business, so I started by producing a company sustainability and stewardship plan as it’s really important to think about this properly. I also did an audit, so I can now prioritise what needs to change.  The biggest change has been to become paperless, and any paper I do buy is from the Woodland Trust.  I also share my policy and plan with others to help them with ideas and I use public transport as my default.

Health

Our minds and bodies need a rest about every 1½ hours, so I now make sure, even if it is a quick 5 minutes or making a cup of tea, regardless of how busy I am, I pause every hour and a half.

I have done lots of small things, continuously, more than listed here, but just looking at these alone I think it makes the feeling of the enormity of climate breakdown and ‘what can I do’ attitude accessible, and it shows that everyone can make do-able changes.

Amanda’s top tip: Think about the environment and develop good habits continuously, make a proper plan so it’s part of everyday living. We are used to hearing messages such as ‘recycle’ and ‘don’t use plastic bags’ because over time we have needed to adopt these actions as our ‘default’ habit. There are many more good habits that we need to adopt, from small things such as switching to bamboo toothbrushes and turning the thermostat down by a couple of degrees to bigger things such as to stop eating meat. The bigger habits are harder but everything adds up.

A warm, green home

Sarah’s Story

Sarah does several simple things to ensure that she and her family lives as sustainably as possible.

From as long as I can remember I have tried to be as environmentally friendly as possible. Here are just a few of the things we do that have become part of our lifestyle.

Around the house

  • This winter I ensured that the house had as much draught proofing as possible, including making winter cat flap covers.
  • We keep the house temperature low, putting on jumpers often bought pre-loved from charities or online auction sites.
  • When turning on a tap or shower to run hot, we collect the water in jugs to be used later for watering plants, soaking pots and pans and handwashing.
  • For cleaning, I mostly just use white vinegar as it’s completely natural, totally safe around children and pets, and leaves no chemical residue.
  • I buy organic refills wherever possible and source environmentally friendly washing up liquid and other household products.

Food and drink

  • We use plates to cover left over food to keep in the fridge for the next day or use washable containers to freeze excess, so no need for cling film at all.
  •  I’ve recently converted to buying organic fruit and veg boxes which use seasonal and local produce with minimum impact on the environment.
  • An automatic part of food shopping is to check ingredients, trying to avoid products containing palm oil, and to purchase items with little or no packaging.

In the garden

  • After last year’s heatwave I installed guttering and a down pipe to the greenhouse and added another water butt, to help my fruit and vegetables get through the growing season.
  • Providing a small wild area with a pond and wildlife friendly plants has brought much joy when seeing creatures large and small take up residence.

Thank you for providing us with an alternative form of energy.

Two cups of tea, made sustainably