Household energy saving project gets underway
Volunteers are gearing up to hit the streets of West Oxfordshire with a thermal imaging camera to survey homes and help people save money on their energy bills.
West Oxfordshire District Council is working with community groups to re-launch the thermal imaging project following its successful introduction last winter.
As the colder weather creeps in, six groups of local volunteers will be offering free surveys and advice to West Oxfordshire householders.
A thermal imaging camera will be used to capture heat loss from outside the properties of anyone wanting a survey, and advice offered on how to make improvements and reduce energy costs.
The project was launched a year ago and volunteer groups were inundated with requests from householders wanting the survey. More than 1,000 homes were surveyed and one community group, Eynsham-based Green TEA (Transition Eynsham Area), has purchased its own thermal imaging camera such is the demand for the service.
The project will be running throughout autumn and winter this year across much of the District. Volunteer groups taking part include; Green TEA, Hailey PACT, Sustainable Charlbury, Sustainable Stonesfield, Sustainable Witney, and Sustainable Woodstock.
Cllr David Harvey, the Council’s Cabinet Member for Environment, said: “We all know how expensive it can be to heat a home and this project gives people the chance to get some really valuable help and advice on saving energy, which is good for the environment and cutting costs for householders too.
“The project is a good example of the Council and community groups working together and we are very grateful to the volunteers who are giving up their time to offer this free service to local people.”
Dale Hoyland, from Witney-based United Sustainable Energy Agency, which is working with volunteer groups on behalf of the Council, added: “In these economically challenging times, we could all do with saving on our bills, as well as being warmer and healthier in our homes. The thermal imaging camera is a fantastic tool to produce a photograph of where heat (and therefore money) is leaking from your home. I would encourage residents to take up this opportunity and find ways to cut heating bills.”
There are some pockets surrounding Witney and to the south of the District not covered by community groups offering the service and the Council would like to hear from anyone in these areas who might like to help. Training and support is given to volunteers.
Information about the project, including how to book a free survey or volunteer, is on the Council’s website www.westoxon.gov.uk/thermalimaging. Alternatively, call 01993 861000.
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