Home Energy Solutions – 20 August 2019

Jackie Flannery of Home Energy Scotland came along to the club to educate us about the work of HES and the benefits it provided by way of reducing domestic fuel bills and carbon emissions. In a highly polished and entertaining talk she gave an insight to the many ways we could be more efficient in our use of fuel to heat our homes.

HES is a network of local advice centres covering all of Scotland. Its expert advisors offer free, impartial advice on energy saving, keeping warm at home, renewable energy, greener travel, cutting water waste and more. It is funded by the Scottish Government and managed by the Energy Saving Trust, and its mission is to help people in Scotland create warmer homes, reduce their bills and help tackle climate change.

Jackie explained how “fuel poverty”, affecting 25% of households in Scotland, is defined as those whose fuel expenditure is more than 10% of their income. “Extreme fuel poverty” occurs when expenditure is more than 20% and affects 7% of households. The health impacts associated with fuel poverty hit the most vulnerable in society; mostly the poor, the elderly, the very young, and those with existing physical and mental health problems. A cold house can raise blood pressure, impairs respiration, and contributes significantly to winter deaths.

HES offers advice and support to those in need and will direct deserving families and individuals to a range of assistance measures including financial grants for those meeting the eligibility criteria (visit:  https://www.energysavingtrust.org.uk/scotland/home-energy-scotland ). Partner organisations include the Fire & rescue service, Age Scotland, Poppy Scotland, and Perennial.

The interest from the members in Jackie’s talk was evident in the number and range of questions that she was asked to answer. This she did with obvious in-depth knowledge and an easy wit.

Craig Wilson and Jackie

Alan Meikle gave the vote of thanks.