For our joint action for May, we’re launching a brand new energy switching tool that will help people save money, choose 100% green energy, while chipping in to support the work of SECA.

Many of you will already be on a green energy tariff, but lots of people haven’t got around to it, or are uncertain where to look amongst the dozens of energy switching sites out there. How about we all give our members a nudge so they put this on their lockdown to-do lists?

Why switch to green energy

The argument to switch to a green energy supplier is compelling. It means that you will be doing your bit to encourage the rollout of renewable energy, which will be central in addressing the climate emergency. And it doesn’t cost any more than dirty fossil fuel based tariffs.  In fact, it will almost always save you money.

How it works

We’re teamed up with the Big Clean Switch energy switching service which has created a special web page for us, which you can point people to. Here’s the link.

All you do is pop in your details, say which supplier you’re currently using, and put in an estimate of your current usage. It then comes back with a list of potential green alternatives and how much you’ll save by switching. You can click through to make the change in a few easy steps. Simples!

What do we mean by ‘green energy’?

This is how Big Clean Switch explain it:

“Power stations, wind turbines and solar farms all feed their energy into the Grid, like rivers running into a big pond. When you switch to green energy, your supplier guarantees that however much electricity you take out of the ‘pond’, the same amount of clean energy will be put in. The more people who switch to clean tariffs, the more renewable energy goes into the pond and the cleaner it gets.”

Which tariffs are available

Big Clean Switch allow you to choose from a range of green energy suppliers, including Octopus Energy, Good Energy, Bulb, Ecotricity, and Bristol Energy. They’ve just added Co-op Energy’s ‘Community Power’ tariff to their site, which is backed 100% by electricity from community projects

Not all ‘green energy’ tariffs are created equal, and Big Clean Switch have strict criteria for selecting which ones to offer. They don’t list tariffs where the supplier’s definition of clean energy includes (a) oil, coal and gas; (b) nuclear or (c) large-scale virgin biofuels, such as those burned at Drax

How SECA benefits

By using the SECA switching page to start your search a small commission will be earned for every switch that’s made (£15-25 per sign up), which will be recycled to support SECA’s future work. This commission doesn’t affect the price of the tariffs, which are the same as they are on suppliers’ own site.

How climate action groups can promote energy switching

We’re hoping that SECA member groups will get behind this idea and spread the word amongst their members and contacts. This blog should hopefully provide all the ammunition you need to put together a newsletter plug or social media post.

Once the lockdown is over, you might like to follow the example of Sussex Green Living and offer face-to-face energy switching advice at events you run. They’ve been partnering with the Big Clean Switch for some time, and have been offering personalised energy switching advice at their repair café and climate café events. Members of the public, some of whom aren’t confident with using the internet, have been able to sit with a volunteer and have them take them through the whole process on a laptop.

It’s been very well received, and there’s been a lot of happy customers.  According to Carrie Cort, from Sussex Green Living, “it only takes 5 minutes to compare a range of clean energy suppliers and make the switch. All the people we have helped to switch have saved money, with savings have ranged between £90 and £366 a year!”

Carrie switching a repair café visitor to clean energy, saving her £255 a year

Thanks to Carrie Cort at Sussex Green Living for suggesting this idea, and putting us in touch with Jon Fletcher and colleagues at the Big Clean Switch.  If you have any ideas for future joint actions by SECA members, contact us at

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