Archive for January, 2014


Lets Get Energized says:
Slyer’s Lane Wind Farm Planned in Charminster near Dorchester Dorset

Category: Dorset Energized News, Wind Power
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Broadview Energy is currently investigating the potential for a wind farm on agricultural land to the north of Dorchester in Dorset.

Wind Farm Plans Welcomed by President of Dorchester’s Chamber of Commerce

The wind farm investment opportunity has apparently been welcomed by the President of Dorchester’s Chamber of Commerce. According to the DorsetEcho, Alison Moore has stressed that the Chamber did not have a view on whether or not the scheme planned for land near Slyer’s Lane at Charminster should go ahead, but said she was pleased with discussions with developer Broadview Energy Limited that if any scheme does go ahead then firms in the county town will be in line to grab a slice of the investment into the area.

Mrs Moore said: “The Chamber doesn’t have a view on whether it goes ahead and it would not be appropriate for us to have one. However, we have been in contact with the developer and have been reassured that if the planning should be successful they are looking to source as many of their suppliers from local businesses as possible, which is absolutely brilliant.”

Broadview’s project manager Tom Cosgrove commented in the Dorset Echo: “Despite the proposal for the Slyer’s Lane project being at a very early stage we are keen to hear from local contractors and businesses who could potentially get involved in the construction phase of the wind farm. If planning permission were to be granted, there would be a range of opportunities for local businesses to get involved through tendering for a wide range of services which could be anything from catering and security to providing labour and materials through construction. We are keen to meet with local suppliers and service providers over the coming months so that we can formulate a picture as to where the best opportunities for utilising a local supply chain lie if the project goes ahead.”

You can read the full Dorset Echo article here:

Potential for up to 7 Wind Turbines

Broadview have stated that initial studies indicate that the site has potential to accommodate up to seven wind turbines, which, if constructed, could make a valuable contribution towards increasing the UK’s energy security and reducing carbon emissions.

In September 2013 West Dorset District Council granted permission for Broadview to install a 60m high wind monitoring mast at the site, which has now been erected. Also underway are a number of detailed technical and environmental studies which will provide further information on the suitability of the site and help to inform an Environmental Impact Assessment, investigating how any future wind farm proposal will integrate with the existing environment.

An important part in the development of the proposal is consultation. Not only with advisory bodies such as Natural England and English Heritage, but also with the local community. Broadview has therefore thanked all of the residents that took the time to come to its public exhibitions during October 2013. The feedback received at the events will be considered during the upcoming design process, during which turbine numbers, size and locations will be fixed. Once they have settled on the project design that achieves the best balance between maximising the generation of renewable electricity and being sensitive to the important characteristics of the local environment, they will hold further exhibitions to display their plans and invite feedback.

For more details of the proposals by Broadview visit their website here:

You can also get updates on the Facebook page here:

Dorset Energized are thrilled to see that our local newspapers are discussing the wind farm in a positive light as we believe that wind power should be an important part of our local energy mix as a clean, domestic resource with no dependency on imported fossil fuels. Click here more information and FAQs about Wind Power.


Sophia Karlberg says:
The Wind Tree – Innovative Silent Wind Power from France!

Category: Eco Gifts & Gadgets, Wind Power
Tags: ,

I absolutely love this new invention! Designed by French company NewWind, The Wind Tree (Arbre à Vent) is an innovative concept to exploit the airflow passing through the urban or peri-urban areas thanks to its rotating leafs.

The Wind Tree is a wind system whose leaves act like many mini wind turbines capable of providing power and energy autonomy. Clearly, it’s an artistic version of our traditional wind turbines. The major advantage of the Wind Tree is that it can be established everywhere, both in towns and in the country, in perfect harmony with its environment and it’s of course silent!

By lowering the starting threshold for these ultralight turbines, 2 m /s wind speed instead of 3 or 4 m /s for conventional turbines equivalent power, it is possible to operate these trees wind up to 200 days year instead of the usual 100 to 110 days. The trunk steel carries a structure able to withstand raffals of strong wind.

Two trunk sizes 8m and 12m are available in order to stay below the limit that requires a building permit (France). Micro -generated electricity is multiplied by as many leaves as a tree has to reach the required minimum power. From a base, anyone can compose the Wind Tree of his choice to get the power he wants, simply by reducing or increasing the number of leafs / turbines on the branches themselves removable. Its leaves are being clipped by a simple Plug & Play, one can intervene on a leaf without the rest of the production is stopped.

For example; an 8 meters tree with branches including 100 leafs could produce up to 3.5 kWh of electricity, adequate for a household of 4 people.

3 Wind Trees can provide 10.5 kW, enough to recharge your electric car at home or at the parking lot of your business or your usual supermarket.

These charging stations are essential to the development of using electric vehicles.

The average unit price of the system is around 16,000 euros. NewWind has an international patent since October 2012.

The Wind Tree is not only a simple innovation, it is also a beautiful and esthetic innovation! This renewable source is perfectly suited for the local authorities market.

You can view the website (and let Google translate into English) at: /


Vince Adams says:
FREE Green Business Start-Up Launch Pad Workshop – 20th February 2014 in Hampshire

Category: Eco Homes DIY & Tourism, Energy Events in Dorset, Renewable Energy, Sustainable Living
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Check out this FREE one-day interactive workshop for green business start-ups providing an opportunity to tackle the challenges that face new eco-ventures amongst like-minded others.

Green Business Start-Up Launch Pad
Thursday 20th February 2014, 9am – 4pm

Eco-station, Camp Road, Bordon, Hampshire GU35 0LH

What’s Happening?

Expert Panel Question Time – With representatives from the key areas of business support, bring your business issues and get some wise advice.

People, Planet and Profit – Business mapping exercise based on ‘shared value’. Ensure your enterprise is truly reflecting your motivations and values.

Collaboration ‘Shout Out’ – Find partners for business solutions from England and France. Use the ‘Shout Out’ board to find collaborators and discover opportunities.

Eco-Business Champion – Conversation with one of Hampshire’s outstanding Green Business leaders James Hewetson-Brown, founder of Wildflower Turf.

You be the Judge – Reflective learning activity where delegates get to be on the panel of investors. Find out what you’ve been missing.

Be Inspired!

Located in Hampshire’s remarkable Eco-town Whitehill Bordon, this enterprise support event is open to all people developing environmentally sustainable businesses.

A retro-fitted ex MOD fire station demonstrates how a redundant facility can be transformed into an environmentally-friendly centre.

A new build exhibition house built with many innovative energy-saving technologies. A guided tour is available to all delegates.

Register for your FREE place now and I hope to see you there!


Guest Energizer says:
Transition Together Comes to Dorchester

Category: Dorset Energized News, Energy Efficiency, Renewable Energy Film/Video, Sustainable Living


Thanks to funding from the Big Lottery ‘Communities Living Sustainably’ programme, a free Transition Together project is about to be launched in Dorset.

Members of Transition Town Dorchester have received training in organising and supporting Transition Together – a scheme that originated in Totnes, Devon, where 550 households have saved an average of £570 per year each on items such as energy, travel costs and food bills.

It works like this: a group of 6-10 people interested in living more sustainably (they may be friends or neighbours) form a Transition Together group and plan to meet 7 times over a period of 3-4 months. They usually meet in each others’ homes on a rotating basis for approx 2 hours per meeting. A trained volunteer facilitator attends the first meeting to help the group get started. The facilitator also provides a Transition Together manual for each person, with chapters on energy, water, transport, food and waste. The manual provides up to date independent information on how much you can save by making different lifestyle choices and changing habits.

The group then carries on without the external facilitator and works through one chapter of the Transition Together manual at each meeting, usually with everyone taking turns to be the organiser or co-ordinator. The external facilitator then attends the last meeting to see how the project went and provide any further help needed. In practice it can be a lot of fun and some groups continue to meet after the end of the 7 sessions.

There is more information and videos on the website

Transition Together groups will be starting in the Fordington and Monmouth Road areas of Dorchester in early February.

For further details or for help to start your own Transition Together group please contact Emily on 07507 321954 or 01305 213721 or email

Posted by Pete West


Sophia Karlberg says:
Dorset, Devon & Wiltshire Councils work with France to tackle our Energy Challenge

Category: Climate Change, Dorset Energized News, Energy Efficiency, Sustainable Living
Tags: , , , ,

I would like to tell you about a positive local collaboration between, amongst others, Dorset, and Brittany in France, that has been going on since May 2011!

I met up with the SEACS (Sustainable Energy Across the Common Space) partnership of local councils on both sides of the Channel, in St Brieuc France, earlier this January to finalise their work on energy saving initiatives.

Tackling the Energy Challenge Together!

This is the vision of the £2million EU-funded project, called Sustainable Energy Across the Common Space, bringing together three UK local authorities; Devon County Council, Dorset County Council and Wiltshire Council, along with two French local authorities in Brittany; Conseil Général des Côtes d’Armor and Lannion-Trégor Agglomération.

The aim of the project is to create opportunities to reduce energy demand, implement energy efficiency measures and use clean renewable energies. The project has raised awareness on the importance of acting now on climate and energy issues and encourage people to change attitudes and behaviours towards energy usage for the long term.

Energy at home, at school, at work

The project is assisting individuals, households, communities, schools (including several schools here in Dorset) and local authority buildings to change their behaviour towards energy usage, implement sustainable energy measures and therefore reduce their energy demand.

The project focused on “Working with People and Communities” and “Working with Schools and Public Buildings”. Through the project the partners has reached around 100 households, 15 community groups around 50 schools and public buildings and to directly involve them in energy action planning.

After 2 days of meeting, the partners managed to review the many different case studies carried out by the partners within the project, to gather the information which will be fed into a toolbox and to discuss potential future collaboration projects.

The toolbox will give information about the all different stages of the initiative, the aim is to serve as a help guide for other authorities wishing to replicate one of the initiatives.

The presentation of the SEACS project will be held in Exeter in the end of March 2014.

Read more about this extraordinary collaboration at:


Jacob Windsor says:
Ecotricity promises ‘Frack-Free Gas’

Category: Fracking, Green Electricity & Gas
Tags: , ,

Britain’s first green energy company Ecotricity has announced that the gas it sources for its customers will be free of gas from Fracking – the controversial process of extracting gas, which is being developed in Britain.

Frack-Free Gas Promise

In an industry first, Ecotricity’s ‘Frack-Free Gas’ promise gives householders and businesses in Britain the opportunity to not only avoid using Fracked gas – but also avoid supporting the Fracking industry with their energy bills.

Ecotricity founder, Dale Vince, said: “Fracking for shale gas will entrench the use of fossil fuels in Britain for decades to come – at the expense of the switch to clean green energy – we can see that happening already.”

He said there were clear environmental risks involved with the hydraulic fracturing process, that were well documented from other parts of the world and Briton’s deserved transparency from energy suppliers and the choice to conscientiously object to the practice.

“The majority of people in Britain simply don’t want Fracking to take place and we think they should be able to choose not to buy gas from such sources. We’re giving people the chance to be conscientious objectors on this issue, to make sure their gas bill money does not support this rather desperate and damaging process.”

The Gloucestershire-based energy company has arrangements in place to ensure that Fracked gas does not enter its gas supply chain.

Vince continued: “People want to be able to choose what they eat and don’t eat – labelling of food enables that – GM-free food is a good example. Green Electricity is also labelled to guarantee its origin.

“We’re extending that concept – Ecotricity’s gas supply now has its own guarantee of origin – it will remain ‘Frack-Free’ so our customers can be sure they will not be supporting the shale gas industry with money from their energy bills.”

Ecotricity was founded in 1995 as the world’s first green energy company. Now powering over 75,000 homes and businesses from its growing fleet of Wind and Sun parks, Ecotricity is a ‘not-for-dividend’ enterprise that, on average, invests more per customer in building new sources of green electricity than any other energy company in Britain.

Switch to green energy

Switch to Ecotricity through Dorset Energized and you’ll receive a £60 Naked Wines voucher (as well as 100% green electricity and green gas)!

Go to: or call free on 08000 302 302. When you sign up please quote ‘Dorset Energized’.


Simon Jonathan Naish Rayson says:
Get Your Mojo!

Category: Electric Transport
Tags: ,

For many advocates of electric bicycles the preferred way of delivering the power of the electric motor is so it goes through the gears in the same manner as the riders own effort. To make this type of assistance possible means having the motor installed at the crank (where the front chain ring is) or between the front chain ring and the rear wheel (attached to the chain).

Until very recently the only way to have this type of motor fitted onto an existing (non electric) bicycle was by putting it between the front chain ring and the rear wheel – a reasonably efficient method, but not always easy to install and set-up, and to many eyes a rather inelegant solution, but all the same an effective method of electric assistance – see some examples here:

However, now a new product is available which can be installed on an ordinary non-electric bicycle (your own favourite maybe) and give the same level and manner of assistance as the excellent but expensive electric bikes built around the Bosch or the Panasonic Electric Motors – for example.

The Mojo is a light, quiet and powerful system that adds electric assistance to any bicycle

The new motor aptly named The Mojo is being marketed by a long term exponent and developer of electric bikes, Tony Castles, under his Mr Motorvator trade mark. The Mojo system is installed by removing the existing cranks and front chain ring on the donor bicycle and then replacing with the Mojo. Something any reasonably competent cycle mechanic could do, and well within the abilities of many a DIY-er. See more here:

Mojo motor unit

I must say having coming across this motor only a few days ago I am still slightly (and apologies) drooling over it – in short, I want one!

Having had dealings with Tony Castles before (and aware of the great enjoyment the Nano drive electric conversion kit for Brompton Folding Bikes, that Tony developed, has brought: I’m sure that any product he shows his confidence in, by selling, is likely to be a good’un. And for product support – well it’s good to deal with someone who really understands the technology.

If I give in to my urge to get one of these Mojo drives (and resistance is not necessarily futile, but at least rather difficult) I’ll do a write up of my on road experiences using it.


Sharon Fay says:
3000th Nissan LEAF takes to the UK Highway!

Category: Electric Transport
Tags: ,

Nissan has clocked up a massive 3000th sale of the all-electric Nissan LEAF in the UK!

Nissan hit the landmark figure in November 2013 when a total of 141 new British built LEAFs were registered in dealerships across the country. Nissan’s second generation LEAF which is built in Sunderland, UK has over 100 improvements over its predecessor and has secured over 1300 UK sales in just 3 months.  The Nissan LEAF continues to grow in other countries to date more than 16,000 have been sold in Europe, while global sales have topped an amazing 87,000.

For more information the Nissan LEAF and to book a free test drive call me on 01963 34335.


Paul McIntosh says:
North Dorset ecohomes project is looking for ecohomes!

Category: Eco Homes DIY & Tourism, Renewable Energy
Tags: ,


The first free Eco-homes event in North Dorset will take place on the weekend of 17/18 May 2014 to showcase energy efficient homes and offices in the District.

North Dorset District Council has received support from the Centre for Sustainable Energy to run the event.

We are asking for those householders and companies who have installed energy efficiency, renewable energy and other environmental improvements in their homes and offices to share their experience with those who wish to improve their own properties. There are many who have invested in improving the environmental performance of their properties and offices – with energy prices rising this is an opportunity to share experiences to the benefit of the local community and show off your work!

The project is aiming to have 25 homes, community buildings and other environmental projects in North Dorset available to visit over the weekend. With increasing concerns over fuel poverty, rising energy costs and wider environmental issues the project will aim to demonstrate, even in older properties, what can be done to address all three concerns.

Householders interested in taking part in the scheme are being asked to register their details online by going to

and filling out some basic information. The project will close for entries at the end of February 2014 when a website and booklet will be produced to showcase the event.

Bridgett Newberry, Project Manager for the Bristol-based Centre for Sustainable Energy, said:

“We are delighted to be supporting this initiative in North Dorset which joins a long list of communities who are undertaking similar green open homes projects. Our research shows that both homeowners and visitors alike benefit from the sharing of experience and expertise on making homes warmer and more efficient.”

For more information contact me, Paul McIntosh, Sustainability Officer for North Dorset District Council, on 01258 484019 or email

1Comments | Post your own comment

  • AmberGreen Solar Panels comments:
    "It’s great to see that renewable energy is being embraced in North Dorset. Hopefully the rest of the country will follow suit. "
    January 14, 2014 a 11:01 am


Sophia Karlberg says:
IKEA selling solar panels from its Bristol store and soon throughout Britain

Category: Energy Efficiency, Solar Energy, Sustainable Living
Tags: ,

Happy 2014 from everyone at Dorset Energized! Here’s our first blog post from our Swedish team member Sophia who is rather well placed to talk about IKEA’s exciting sustainable work…


The world’s biggest home-furnishing retailer, IKEA, has announced it has struck a deal with a solar panel manufacturer to begin selling solar power kits from its stores in Britain.

The Swedish company has revealed it has a deal with Hanergy Solar Group to sell the solar-panel systems in its 18 United Kingdom stores for the first time. At present, solar panel installations are already currently available from the IKEA Bristol store and they will sell the systems in all UK shops within 10 months after a successful trial that took place in July 2013.

IKEA Chief Sustainability Officer Steve Howard said that prices on solar panels have dropped enough in recent years so “It’s the right time to go for the consumers.”

The Hong Kong solar panel producer Hanergy Solar UK have been chosen to offer a full solar installation service using next generation solar technology using thin-film panels. “In our opinion it’s the first time a truly global retailer has provided dedicated retail space and dedicated staff solely to PV.” says Toby Ferenczi, co-chief executive officer of Hanergy’s UK business.

IKEA Solar Panels include installation, maintenance and energy monitoring

An IKEA solar panel would include the traditional in-store consult and design service, but there’s no attached instruction manual. The price also includes installation, maintenance, and energy monitoring after it’s installed. The installation of the solar panel system takes around 2 days. Once installed and tested and the Hanergy ‘Home energy monitoring system’ set up, the remaining costs can be paid to Hanergy then the costumer will receive all necessary paperwork to start receiving the Feed-in Tariff and earning from the solar system.

IKEA has installed more than 300,000 solar panels on almost 300 IKEA stores and buildings across the world. As part of this commitment they have decided to make it easier for clients to purchase affordable solar panels for their home and could potentially earn up to £700 tax-free a year.

Solar power is a part of IKEA’s plan to source all its energy from renewable energy by 2020. IKEA are strongly committed to investing in renewable energy and ‘energy-efficient’ technology to help tackle climate change and has committed €1.5 billion to invest up until 2015 (mainly in wind and solar power) to help them reach their goal of energy independence.

The long term direction is for all IKEA Group buildings (warehouses, distribution centres, factories and offices) to be heated and cooled using renewable fuels such as wind, water, solar power, biofuels and geothermal energy. In addition, they will improve the IKEA Group’s overall energy efficiency by 25 percent compared with 2005. Among other things IKEA will use energy-saving light bulbs where possible, will have the lights on only when warehouses are open, and will install extra insulation to save on energy for heating and cooling.

To find out more about buying solar panels from IKEA visit: or click here to get advice from a Dorset Certified Solar Installer.

Here are just some examples of IKEA’s important work towards sustainable activity:

Efficient transport of products; optimised loads and fewer transports – that’s why they design flat packs! Examples; One of their product designers found a way to pack the EKTORP sofa flatter and make the shipping box almost half the size.They redesigned the VIDJA lamp, making it easier to assemble by eliminating 24 of the 33 components which reduced the packaging weight by 28%, now they can fit 128 lamps on a pallet, where there were previously only 80 lamps!

They use recyclable packaging requiring minimal raw material and by switching from wood to paper pallets they reduced their footprint of transporting IKEA products by 75,000 tonnes of CO2 per year.

Using wood resources wisely; for many years they have worked with others to increase the supply of wood from responsibly managed forests and are one of the founding members of the Forest Stewardship Council® (FSC). Their IWAY Forestry Standard sets clear requirements for all wood used in IKEA products – which include a ban on wood that has been illegally harvested and from sources involved in forest-related social conflicts, or from high conservation value forests. In addition to suppliers meeting the IWAY Forestry Standard, the volume of wood from preferred sources (recycled wood and wood from forests certified by the FSC) increased to 22.6% from 16.2% in 2012. They are aiming for 50% by 2017. They now have 21 foresters specialists working to ensure that all wood is sourced in compliance with forestry standards and in a responsible way.

IKEA partnership with WWF – projects around climate change; One of these projects looks at how to recycle IKEA products at the end of their life-cycle finding ways to enable customers to either recycle of re-use the products when they no longer want them. Another project will map all areas of the IKEA business where they can make a change to their current practices that will benefit the environment. They will also focus on creating awareness of IKEA products that can help people live a more sustainable life at home. One project is about minimising the carbon footprint of their food business. IKEA and WWF have worked together since 2002 to combat illegal logging and promote responsible timber trade, to support credible forest certification, and map and protect High Conservation Value Forests to secure biological and social forest values. So far they have helped to improve forest management in Europe and Asia, and contributed to increasing FSC-certified forest areas by around 30 million hectares in the countries where they work together.

Working actively to prevent child labour; all IKEA suppliers and sub-contractors must comply with the IKEA code on conduct on child labour: “The IKEA Way on Preventing Child Labour”. That’s why IKEA Social Initiative invests in child rights projects with UNICEF and Save the Children.

Expanding the range of organic products and food; Organic agriculture excludes the use of chemical fertilisers or pesticides, and strives to maintain biodiversity and ecological balances. Many markets are sourcing organic food for their national menu in the restaurants. For example IKEA Italy has around 70 organic ingredients used for restaurant food preparation. The Swedish Food Market in IKEA stores are also expanding range of organic products. Their global range offers 20 organic food products.

Animal welfare; to improve the animal welfare standards in farms that supply to IKEA’s food business, IKEA has partnered with the international charity Compassion in World Farming (CIWF). CIWF engages with Europe’s biggest food manufacturers, supporting initiatives which lead to tangible benefits for the welfare of farm animals reared for food production. In addition, IKEA and all their salmon suppliers participate in the Salmon Dialogue, a multi-stakeholder initiative managed by the WWF which sets out principles and criteria for environmentally, socially and economically responsible salmon farming.

Waste Management Manual; it was established for the IKEA group in 1999 requiring all stores to sort the five most common waste items, at a minimum. In practice, this ensures that almost 75% of the waste is sorted in the stores and more than 80% is (at the end of life) recycled or used for energy production.

Food to Energy in Scandinavia; at some stores in Sweden, Norway and Denmark IKEA grind up food leftovers from their costumers plates in a mill and store them in a special tank. The food waste finds its way to a special treatment centre where it gets reused, as biogas to run buses on.

These are just a few examples of IKEA’s fantastic work toward a sustainable future. To learn more about IKEA’s goals, improvements and sustainable development work visit

2Comments | Post your own comment

  • Nigel comments:
    "I will agree with Stuart’s comment above regarding the necessity of having a system installed by MCS registered companies. What he does not realise (or did not at the time) is that we only use local installation teams who are stringently monitored so as our customers are very well looked after. Although an international company working with Ikea to bring sustainable lifestyle at affordable prices, we understand the importance of keeping things local. Additionally, using local companies also keeps the costs down as they do not have to travel as far to install out CIGS Thin Film panels. I encourage the installation of all renewable energy; but for an initial quote that needs no home visit, please come and see myself or any of my team at the Bristol Ikea, or, of course, any other Ikea in the country where we have dedicated solar advisors present whenever the store is open. "
    April 26, 2014 a 2:35 pm

  • Stuart Houghton comments:
    "Whilst I am all for anything that raises the profile of Solar PV like this offer from Ikea I would strongly recommend anyone thinking of installing a system should talk to their local installer. Your Local Installer will be able to give you a much more personal service and at a competitive price that should be cheaper than the Ikea offering. You can find a full list of accredited installers at the following site As a small local installer we can offer a wide selection of modules and inverter types which are best suited to you and I am sure Ikea will be selling systems out of the box. "
    January 8, 2014 a 11:55 am

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