Word is spreading about the latest green housing opportunity in Britain. Specifically targeted at households located in England and Wales, the green deal initiative is a green home improvement scheme worth taking a detailed look at to see whether it offers an attractive proposition for implementing the latest green technologies.
Intriguing possibilities for green energy generation from Green Deal includes biomass boilers, small wind turbine systems or solar power from an installation of solar panelling.
Biomass boilers are an interesting case. In some ways they are a step back in time. Boilers extract energy to provide hot water and heating throughout the home. Usually wood chips, pellets or logs are burned and converted to energy.
A buffer tank or thermal store is essential for the smooth operation of a biomass boiler as it reduces the amount of cycling up and down that the boiler must do to meet variable demand.
Whilst using a biomass boiler certainly cuts down on the energy needed from a utility company to heat the home, the wood itself releases co2 into the atmosphere which is not as green as one would think. Used to excess by many thousands of home owners, this would create a haze cloud as is seen annually around April when forests are slashed and burned using unsustainable harvesting methods in some south-east Asian countries. However, uses on a small scale by a small number of homes would not provide an issue.
Small wind turbines are now coming into their own with new designs which reduce wind sheer, cut down noise during operation and produce a sensible amount of kilowatts for the installation expense incurred to get up and running. No longer the purview of the rich, or only for corporations, wind turbines are now available from UK suppliers, which use only a small footprint and provide enough energy to at least power a medium sized property half of the day. The other improvement with wind turbines is that they now need a small fraction of the wind speed previously required for operation, so more homes are suitable for installation.
Solar power perhaps is the most interesting renewable energy source. Many homes have roofs which are suitable for a solar panel installation and are oriented in a direction to pick up sufficient sun-rays each day. Despite the UK not enjoying the same good weather as Las Vegas, Nevada, solar panels are still quite usable to collect sunlight many hours of the day and store the energy in battery packs for later use.
The green deal initiative provides a surveyor who will examine a home to see if any of these renewable energy sources or green improvements are suitable. Other home improvements like energy efficient lighting, better radiator heat controls and upgraded insulation might not be as sexy, but all help to reduce the future energy needs of the home. The final report can be used to obtain financing that pays for the agreed improvements, which is repayable on the electricity or gas bill over time. Approved contractors are available to carry out the agreed upon works too.