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Lets Get Energized says:
Ecotopia Back to Uni Kits for Zero Waste Week

Category: Climate Change, Energy Efficiency, Sustainable Living

The lovely ethical people at Ecotopia (powered by 100%  renewable energy suppliers Ecotricity) have asked us to share some news as part of Zero Waste Week (1st – 7th September 2014).

As this years theme is “one more thing”, they have pledged to do even more than they already are (as if creating a clean energy future for Britain was not enough!), so they will be sharing hints and tips on their Facebook and Twitter pages and would love to hear what your “one more thing” is. Use the hash tags #onemorething #zerowasteweek and #GreenBritain to get involved on social media.



They have also launched three eco-friendly back to uni survival kits. It includes a healthy variety of essentials that students (or teachers!) will need for your first few weeks. They have even included a cheeky herbal hangover comforter – it will ease the pain of that unavoidable first hangover from hell!

There are lots more Zero Waste Week Price Reductions at the Ecotopia shop here too, so happy shopping!


Anna Celeste Watson says:
3 Recommended films to inspire you to action for Zero Waste Week

Category: Climate Change, Energy Efficiency, Renewable Energy Film/Video, Sustainable Living
Tags: ,

As Zero Waste Week continues this week, I thought I would share a couple of films I have been recommended on the subject of reducing waste. Perhaps this is something like me, you can add to your #ZeroWasteWeek pledge (i.e., watch the films and be inspired, or maybe prodded more likely, into action!) or maybe Dorset Energized will put on a screening sometime – please let us know if you want to get involved with a film night or know anywhere in Dorset screening these!

1. Trashed (Feature Film, 2012)

Trashed – No Place For Waste, starring Jeremy Irons, looks at the risks to the food chain and the environment through pollution of our air, land and sea by waste. The film reveals surprising truths about very immediate and potent dangers to our health. It is a global conversation from Iceland to Indonesia between the film star Jeremy Irons and scientists, politicians and ordinary individuals whose health and livelihoods have been fundamentally affected by waste pollution. Visually and emotionally the film is both horrific and beautiful: an interplay of human interest and political wake-up call. But it ends on a message of hope: showing how the risks to our survival can easily be averted through sustainable approaches that provide far more employment than the current ‘waste industry’. The film premiered in Cannes 2012 and has won 8 awards.

You can watch this online for a very modest download fee – just go to or watch the trailer below:

2. N0 Impact Man (Feature Film, 2009)

In No Impact Man, Colin Beavan decides to completely eliminate his personal impact on the environment for the next year. It means eating vegetarian, buying only local food, and turning off the refrigerator. It also means no elevators, no television, no cars, busses, or airplanes, no toxic cleaning products, no electricity, no material consumption, and no garbage. No problem – at least for Colin – but he and his family live in Manhattan. So when his espresso-guzzling, retail-worshipping wife Michelle and their two-year-old daughter are dragged into the fray, the No Impact Project has an unforeseen impact of its own. Laura Gabbert and Justin Schein’s film provides an intriguing inside look into the experiment that became a national fascination and media sensation, while examining the familial strains and strengthened bonds that result from Colin and Michelle’s struggle with their radical lifestyle change.

You can watch this online for FREE – just go to or watch the trailer below:

3. The Story of Stuff (Short Film, 2007)

The Story of Stuff, originally released in December 2007, is a 20-minute, fast-paced, fact-filled look at the underside of our production and consumption patterns. The Story of Stuff exposes the connections between a huge number of environmental and social issues, and calls us together to create a more sustainable and just world. It’ll teach you something, it’ll make you laugh, and it just may change the way you look at all the Stuff in your life forever.

You can watch this short film online for FREE – just go to or watch the trailer below:


There’s so many more great looking environmental and food themed films out there I want to watch, but these 3 should do for now!

Please send us your reviews on these films and any other recommendations by submitting your Comments below : )


Anna Celeste Watson says:
Take the Zero Waste Week Pledge

Category: Climate Change, Energy Efficiency, Sustainable Living


This week (1st – 7th September 2014) is Zero Waste Week and they are calling upon us all to take a simple pledge this week as an opportunity to reduce landfill waste and save money.

Now in its seventh year, this year’s theme is “One More Thing” – what one more thing could YOU do?

Zero Waste Pledge Ideas include:

  • Ditch plastic carrier bags
  • Pack a zero waste lunch
  • Recycle your Tetra Pak cartons
  • Take clothes to a textile bank
  • Shop naked!
  • Declutter without landfill
  • Reduce food waste
  • Repair something
  • Spread the word!

You’ll feel good so live longer!!!

There’s a rather amusing post on the Zero Waste Week blog claiming that by taking the pledge you’ll feel good and therefore live longer! Okay, bit of a mad claim but they say, and I have to agree:

People who feel good about something are happy. Happy people are healthy. Healthy people live longer. You’ve been meaning to set yourself a goal, right? And that recycling bin has been tugging at your conscience. Now’s the time to get some support, encouragement and help to do what you’ve been meaning to do anyway.

This probably sums up the whole ethos of Dorset Energized too – getting involved with supporting renewable energy is naturally energizing, it makes you feel good, plus you can even save money especially by reducing waste and using less energy in the first place.

Sign up and find out more at:

Check out our own Energy Efficiency section for lots more ideas on reducing waste too.

3Comments | Post your own comment

  • vince adams comments:
    "I want to live lots longer so I am doing it all, come on it feels great just making an effort and knowing together the effect will be huge. "
    September 4, 2014 a 5:02 pm

  • Anna comments:
    "You are very welcome Rachelle – its such as great idea and hopefully will inspire lots of people! I’m also pledging not to use plastic bags. I always try and re-use bags and try to never to get plastic bags, but sometimes I forget to pack my bags when doing my food shop so somehow they keep accumulating and they are really not good thing so I will definitely try harder : ) "
    September 1, 2014 a 4:25 pm

  • Rachelle Strauss comments:
    "Hey there, thanks so much for the Zero Waste Week shout out and I’m glad you like my rather tongue-in-cheek blog post :D "
    September 1, 2014 a 4:19 pm


Anna Celeste Watson says:
Save water and energy for World Water Week

Category: Climate Change, Energy Efficiency, Sustainable Living
Tags: ,

HSBC/ WaterAid Partnership

As we celebrate Organic September and Zero Waste Week, this week is also World Water Week (31st August – 5th September 2014) and water is one thing we should never take for granted (although we all usually do of course – every day!)…

Global leaders gathered in Stockholm on 1st September for the 24th annual World Water Week, urging energy and water communities to work together to face some of the main challenges of our time providing clean drinking water and energy for a growing world population. The theme of 2014 World Water Week is “Energy and Water”.

In the UK, the excessive amount of water we all use every day at home is putting an unsustainable demand on our planet’s resources, biodiversity and people, and by using, and wasting, a lot of water we are also using, and wasting, a lot of energy (and money of course).

World Water Aid tell us that there is also a global water crisis, as every minute, every day, people in poorer countries suffer and lives are lost needlessly, simply because of a lack of safe water and sanitation. Most of us cannot even begin to imagine what this must be like, so we can at least make a small effort to save water and recycle it where we can, so as not to put a further strain on our fellow people and the Earth.

Eat less meat to save water (and help stop climate change too!)

As I mentioned here on the Dorset Energized blog last year for last World Water Week (where does the time go?!), it takes 10,000 – 20,000 litres of water to produce just 1kg of beef! This compares with around 1,200 litres for 1kg of maize and 1800 for a kilo of wheat. I have also read this week that to produce a day’s food for just one meat-eater takes over 4,000 gallons of water! Read more about water use in intensive factory farming on Compassion in World Farming’s RAW website (under Resource Waste).

According to the Vegetarian Society, farming accounts for around 70% of all freshwater taken from lakes, waterways and underground water supplies, much of it to produce meat. Waterways also run with manure, antibiotics and hormones washed in from the land and all sorts of pollutants from industrial fish farms.

We all know by now that we need to eat a lot less meat, and reports on how a plant-based vegan diet is the most eco-friendly and can help end climate change and reduce our impact on the environment, are all over the news and social media at the moment. I highly recommend visiting The Vegan Society website for more advice. I can vouch that being vegan makes you feel good too – on every level, and I truly feel it is one of the best decisions I ever made : )

Fracking uses millions of gallons of water

As one of our users previously commented on our blog – fracking uses a staggering 3 to 8 million gallons of water per frack. The water is also so toxic with chemicals and radioactive particles that it cannot be recycled and when the well leaks (as all wells do eventually) the water table will also be contaminated.

So yet another reason (as if any sane person needed one) to oppose fracking and support clean energy instead. Find out more at

Go Go Hydro Power!

Renewable energy is all about positively harnessing the power of nature to generate clean and sustainable energy, and hydro-electric power which comes from using water to turn a turbine, supplies around 20% of the world’s electricity and yet it is still barely being used at all in the UK even though apparently we have one of the highest wave energy potentials in Europe, if not the world!

For more information on how we can use water as a renewable energy source to make hydro-electricity, here in Dorset and the UK, see our section all about Water Power which also links to local hydro-power projects.

Use less water to reduce your water footprint

The World Wildlife Fund (WWF) has lots of information on their website on how you can save water and on their campaign to reduce the impact of humanity’s water footprint, such as:

  • Turn off the taps in-between brushing your teeth
  • Fix dripping taps
  • Take short showers instead of a bath
  • Install water-saving, low-flow shower heads
  • Collect rainwater
  • Collect rinsing water

You can also check out Waterwise’s Quick Tips and Facts on Saving Water.

And as always, remember that small changes in your every habits really can make a big difference – and it all starts with you and me!

1Comments | Post your own comment

  • vince adams comments:
    "What a fantastic set of news, campaigns and generally exciting opportunities for us all to get involved with.
    If everyone of us did just a small act within each sector, save some water, eat just a little less red meat and support renewable energy the effect to yourself, your family, to the UK and to the World is just huge.
    Come on join up and feel the success of doing something positive. "

    September 4, 2014 a 4:58 pm


Lets Get Energized says:
Community Energy Fortnight 13th – 28th September

Category: Community Energy


It’s great to see so much going on this month on the subject of energy – with the launch of our new monthly prize draw competition for Organic September and Zero Waste Week earlier this month and now it’s Community Energy Fortnight (13th – 28th September 2014)…

Last year was the first ever Community Energy Fortnight which took place right across the UK. Events ranged from a walking tour of mountain hydros in Snowdonia, a visit to Westmill wind farm and solar park, to a free Energy Saving Workshop here in Bridport Dorset and an Open Energy-Saving Homes Day in our neighbouring county of Hampshire.

The aim of the Fortnight is to engage and inspire people about the wide-ranging benefits of community energy – and to encourage groups to set up their own projects too.

Both in the build-up to, and during, the 2013 Community Energy Fortnight, The Community Energy Coalition (CEC)  ran a petition in support of community energy. We are thrilled to hear they received nearly 60,000 signatures! They presented the petition to the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change, Ed Davey, during the Fortnight.

2014 Events

Here in Dorset for 2014, 18 local residents in Bridport, Lyme and surrounding villages will be opening their homes to the public to share information about how they have made their homes energy efficient, and energy generating between 12th – 14th September as part of an Open Ecohomes weekend.

There is also an Energy Savers Eco Fair in Devon, a Renewable Energy Fair in Somerset, a Poetry Slam in Exeter, and quite a few events including more open eco homes, energy saving workshops and a DIY Solar Panel workshops, in nearby Bristol.

For a full list of 2014 UK events go to:

Our Top 5 Dorset Community Energy Projects

It’s probably a good excuse to highlight some great community renewable energy projects we have previously reported on, to hopefully give you some inspiration to start or get involved with a local energy project with your own community group, school or business:

  1. Community Hydro Energy in Pymore Bridport (Currently only in the Planning Stage)
  2. Salway Ash Primary School in Bridport Go Green (with Solar PV, Heat Pumps and a Wind Turbine)
  3. Benjafield Screw Turbine Installation Near Gillingham (Hydro Power Project)
  4. Blandford Forum Parish Goes Green (with Renewable Heat Systems)
  5. Bindon Mill Screw Turbine Installation (Hydro Power Project)

Check out our Community Energy category here on our blog for lots more news and views too.

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