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Messages - GemmaRowlands

I have a friend who makes a small profit, but she is more than happy with the fact that she hardly pays energy bills, as this saving will make the investment more than worth it. It is definitely something to consider if you have the money upfront to pay for the panels, because over time you are almost certain to find that it will have a very positive impact indeed on your energy bills.
I think it will take a lot of work to make this the case, but I don't think it's impossible to think about for the future. You can't just think about the actual energy - you also need to consider the appliances that we use, and the way that these will need to be adapted, so you will need a changeover time of one generation at least, if not two. But for the future, this is definitely possible, without any shadow of a doubt.
General / Re: Do you support nuclear power?
July 25, 2016, 11:40:08 PM
I'm not saying that I am actively campaigning against it by any means - but I can't bring myself to support it, either. I believe that there are other avenues that can be explored, and for this reason the risk to life just isn't really justifiable for the most part when thinking about this type of energy.
I personally think that hydro electricity is underused, as it is something that is always available, but so few people actually harness that energy at the moment to turn it into something useful. Wind is great, but the turbines have to be switched off after a certain wind speed, so to some extent the best of the energy is actually wasted entirely!
Yes, I think we should. And I think that the longer we leave it, the more irreversible the damage is going to be, and this means that we really do need to sit up and do something about it as soon as we possibly can. It's not something that can wait, and as you say, the technology is already out there to make it a possibility, all that needs to happen now is for it to actually be put into practice in the right way.
I think that gyms should have generators on their bikes and manual treadmills, as there must be some kind of energy that could come out of those! The majority of bikes are electric and have lots of programmes on, but there is a huge opportunity to change this around and create energy with the movement, instead.
General / Re: Coal losing favour in China
July 25, 2016, 11:33:04 PM
With so much research regarding other options than fuel, I just don't think that it should be such a massive thing in any country anymore. The emissions from burning coal as fuel are shocking, and there is so much that can be done about it. It is each country's duty to do this, as a way to help protect the planet in the long term.
I think it is very important for countries to take lessons from places like Norway who clearly do energy so well. But I suppose it's swings and roundabouts, in that there may be other things that we do well that they admire us for - but I do think it would be a worthy investment for us in the UK in the long term.
I would never class myself as an activist as such, but at the same time I do certainly try my best to spread the word about issues whenever I can. I would actually like to have more to do with campaigning, but unfortunately I'm so busy at work that it just isn't something that I am able to do at the moment really.
Since installing loft insulation, I have noticed a subtle change, but one that is most definitely there. Every bill that we receive now is a little bit smaller, and because of the fact that we got this insulation done completely for free, it is a great thing. I think it is due to the fact that, although we do still put the heating on in the evening, the new insulation makes it so that it doesn't need to be on as high, or for as long. So we are definitely getting some benefit from it! It would be great to see how some other people feel about it, too.
Insulation / Re: Should I replace my loft insulation?
September 30, 2014, 10:02:43 AM
You do have to be very careful when you take the advice of somebody who comes knocking on the door, and the question that should always be on your mind is "what's in this for them?" If they want something doing to your home, it's very, very unlikely that it is actually for your benefit at all. Being honest, I can't see why the insulation in the loft would need to be replaced, certainly not as soon as "every few years" at the very least!
It's not just the question of whether to get a water butt or not, there are so many different types. Ideally, you should get one that has a tap on it in order to release the water when you need to use it, because this means that you could then get as much or as little as you needed for the job that you wanted to do without having to worry about how you were going to get at the water. If you just use a container that is non-specific for the job in question then there is always the chance that you might struggle to get the water out of it.
There is always the option of using it to flush your toilet. I visited Chatsworth House in Derbyshire recently, and noticed when I visited their toilets that they use recycled water from the lake to flush with, which I thought was a great idea. It didn't look all that clean, but I assume that there is some way that you could treat it in order to get rid of as much of the bacteria as you possibly can.
Two reasons:

- For your own energy bills. It makes sense that if you're using less water, your water bills are going to cost less.

- For the environment. Using less water saves some water, meaning that it is much more environmentally friendly.

There are things, for example watering plants or feeding animals, that do not require clean water to the extent that it comes out of the tap, and this means that using recycled rainwater could very well be a good solution, so I believe that all should make the effort to collect it if it is at all possible.
Wind Turbines / Re: Can these be used domestically
September 30, 2014, 09:55:48 AM
You can - and on the contrary, I'm not sure whether they would decrease the value of your home or not, because of the additional income that they could bring. Any house that is moving towards being self sufficient is going to be worth more, surely, because of the fact that they're not going to cost as much for the upkeep. If you think about it, buying a house with a domestic wind turbine would save you money in energy costs, and this could mean that you would be able to pay a little more for the house in the first place.