Energy Group

For group members: (not just Nicola) - Glossary

Next meeting: Monday 4th June at 8pm, at Margaret's place on Oxford Road. Contact Nicola for details of where that is.. The main topic will be low carbon heating, including heat generation (biomass, heat pumps, CHP) and also energy saving.

Latest News and events

First step to a low carbon vision for Cambridge

At our April meeting we started a discussion on what a low carbon Cambridge might look like and how to get there. The plan is to make a list of possible strategies, whittle this down to 3 or 4 that are practical and will make a real difference, then see what we can do to promote them. Needless to say, we didn't manage all that in one meeting! Our list of strategies includes:

  • Very high levels of recycling
  • Less energy intensive lifestyles
  • Eating less meat and animal products
  • Lots more insulation in homes and other buildings
  • Lots more street level PV on rooftops
  • LED street lights
  • High levels of walking and cycling (and possibly electric bikes)
  • Much greater use of public transport
  • Polluting cars banned from the city centre
  • Congestion charging in the city centre
  • Hydrogen fuel stations for e.g. buses
  • District heating by CHP
  • Underground inter-seasonal heat storage
  • Smart charging for cars, with vehicle to grid (V2G) energy storage services
  • Grid connected battery storage (possibly flow batteries)

Would you like to take part in this discussion? The notes are in a shared document on google drive but I can't give you the link here for fear of spammers. You can access a readonly (pdf) version here . If we know you and you would like to take part let me know.

What are we doing to save energy and carbon emissions?

You can read suggestions from some Energy Group members here. Suggestions are ordered by cost - three of them are less than 100.

Advice on keeping cool in the summer

Read out latest fact sheet: how to keep cool in the summer time. From keeping windows closed in the summer time, to DIY awnings, and ice packs for the head.

All about embodied energy

Nicola has written an overview of embodied energy/carbon issues including how you measure it and what are the implications. For example, in some cases (like conventional cars) operational energy dominates, in other cases manufacturing or materials (like carpets). In other cases both are important. The report includes comments issues raised in our discussion on the topic. Read it on her website here

All about the circular economy

Nicola has written an overview of the circular economy and what we can do to promote it. (e.g. get your stuff mended professionally, consider renting rather than buying stuff). This includes comments issues raised in our discussion on the topic. Read it on her website here

New Energy Saving Personal Checklist

The Energy Group now have a tool to give you a personalised checklist with ideas to help you save energy. The checklist links into our existing advice web pages and other resources. This survey and checklist was developed starting from Cambridge Carbon Footprint's Climate Friendly Homes materials so thanks to CCF for letting us use them. We would really like your feedback so please fill in the feedback form after you have looked at your checklist.

Energy advice pages

See here for advice on saving energy, energy efficient heating and generating renewable energy at home.

Help Wanted

Please email us if you would like to help or contribute your ideas, whether or not you can come to meetings.

At the moment we are particularly looking for assistance with:

  • Authoring FAQ pages and fact sheets, both writing the answers and writing the questions so you don't have to be an expert to help. Some ideas for more:, heritage buildings ...

By the way, Nicola's thermographic pictures of houses in Cambridge are still here.