Green, with envy?

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The most depressing report in years arrives from comparethemarket.com. It reveals that the 14% of households now overtly trying to 'go green’ with their energy supply are being seriously let down by misleading tariffs.

The majority of providers' green efforts focus on electricity, with 37 of the 54 dual fuel green tariffs analysed offering electricity supplied from renewable sources. But only one in five actually comes from 100% renewable sources.

Another 12 tariffs provide either just 15% or 25% of the gas a household consumes from renewable sources – and 30 of these ‘green’ tariffs do not provide any gas from renewable sources at all. 

More than half have no renewable gas component at all, and most of the rest offer only carbon offset schemes in developing countries that have been criticised by environmentalists as ineffective and open to exploitation. One supplier, which even has the word green in its company name, does not state that its energy supply is only from renewable sources in two of its three available tariffs. It all furthers the potential to mislead customers.

It used to be that ‘being green’ referred to being easily gullible, not to being environmentally aware. I am beginning to wonder if that old definition isn’t now taking precedence.