Cuddly toys for all

My last column, castigating the ludicrous and irritating  TV cartoon characters Gaz and Leccy,  really struck a chord.  These inventions only appear in purchased TV advertising slots, and are the creation of a rather shadowy organisation called Smart Energy GB.

This outfit is funded to the tune of approaching £50million a year, by the various domestic energy suppliers – and so eventually by all consumers. The message is a simple one: get a so-called smart meter installed, and your fuel bills will no longer be estimated. Big deal.

According to its’ Annual Report, Smart Energy GB ‘s largest item of expenditure is on these ads. The last one I saw focused primarily upon a domestic toaster and its apparent impact upon the gas meter – which, given that toasters can only be fuelled by electricity, was presumably always nil. 

In the UK, there are currently 1.3 million people who are working or have worked in energy and electrical related sectors. Thousands of these people are in need of our support. This is why the Electrical Industries Charity has launched its Employee Assistance Programme of which the Pensioner, Apprentice, Employee and Family Support and Practical Participation Programmes are part of. In addition, to its Assistance Programmes, the Charity has also launched the powerLottery, a variety of fundraising events and its second Challenge for a Cause campaign to help our less fortunate colleagues in their time of need.

Lies, damned lies, and statistics

“It does not matter how low the price of offshore wind is, on last year’s figures it (sic) only produced electricity 36% of the time.” This is verbatim what listeners to the BBC Radio 4 flagship Today programme were told by the CEO of the Nuclear Industry Association, Tom Greatrex. He was being challenged regarding the official recognition by government that new offshore wind developments are now at least one-third cheaper that the price agreed for new nuclear power stations like Hinkley Point B.

The battle against time is something electrical installers know only too well. The logical step is to find innovative solutions in order to free up time-consuming labour costs, as Malcolm Moss, managing director for Doby Verrolec, explains

Over the last few years, we have seen products continuing to evolve in regard to energy efficiency, as well becoming increasingly more cost-effective. However, one area that is often overlooked in enabling electricians and installers to save time, is installation methods.

Malcolm Anson, president of the Building Controls Industry Association (BCIA) discusses the impact of smart cities and why we need such forward-thinking methods across the UK.

Christmas cheer

So farewell then  to Vincent de Rivaz. Mr de Rivaz has been with the French state-backed energy giant Electricité de France for the past forty years. and has stood at the helm of the UK business since 2002.

By Jason Juley

Third platform technologies and big data are core drivers of converged infrastructure, pre-configured systems, optimization and virtualization. In turn, all are driving dramatic changes to how IT is provisioned, deployed and consumed. Managing these changing IT landscapes simultaneous with ensuring business continuity, optimizing cost and mitigating risk requires careful planning and a coordinated approach.

At a recent event I sat down with Kevin Brown, Chief of Technology and Innovation for Schneider Electric’s IT Division, and we covered a lot of ground talking about how increasingly widespread adoption of cloud services is impacting the way companies are having to adapt to meet their data center infrastructure requirements.

Olson Electronics has recently released its new website to enable purchasing of its products online for the very first time. The website is a significant improvement from their previous version and has been released in-line with their 55-years of British manufacturing celebration. With Olson being the market leader of PDUs and highly regarded within the industry, I can already see this will be welcomed by all of Olson’s current and future customers.

And then there were five?

Just as I predicted last month prime minister, Theresa May, is planning to place a price cap on all tariffs operated by the Big Six electricity companies. In the past I have joked, given Npower’s precipitate loss of market share, whether that title shouldn’t be altered to the Big Five-and-a –half.  But I am now beginning to wonder whether that “and-a-half” description may soon be too generous.