By Alice Maxwell
Eco Savvy hosted a wonderful evening at the Little Rock in Brodick on 28th March to present their Energy Challenge Awards and talk about their successes over the past year.
The evening began with a short video of the Swedish activist, 16 year old Greta Thunberg, giving a moving and urgent talk about climate change.
Next Jude from Ecosavvy discussed Ecosavvy’s activities and successes. So far Ecosavvy has conducted energy audits on 300 houses on Arran. The energy saving measures adopted due to their advice has led to carbon savings which are equivalent to 99 car journeys around the world. Changes suggested range from implementing draught proofing, pipe insulation, and using radiator reflective foil, to changing to renewable energy sources such as air source heat pumps and solar panels.
Carbon saving pledges have been encouraged too – including pledges to buy second hand rather than new, to change to a plant based diet, switching energy supplier, eating local seasonal food and “let’s walk rather than drive”. So far 45 pledges have been made.
We were delighted to hear Eco Savvy has been successful in gaining two more years of funding from the Scottish Government to continue their inspiring work. The next two years will focus on sustainable travel on Arran (including the e-bike challenge) and sustainable food.
EcoSavvy has also spearheaded the highly popular food share scheme with the Co-op which has saved almost a tonne of food going to landfill.
Five representatives of the newly formed Arran schools Eco Committee were invited. They have a huge focus on reduction of plastic use and litter picking and will work with local businesses and charities. Schools already work together with green ideas such as pedalling bikes to make smoothies and composting. Kilmory school kids even grow their own potatoes, carrots and peas which are used in their school kitchen.
The children were present to give out the awards, under the stewardship of deputy head Quinton Black. Awards were given for communicating with eco-savvy about energy savings, for implementing small scale energy solutions, for spreading the word about energy efficiency measures, for installing large scale renewables, and for solar energy installations. These were given to Richard Trewby, Peter Early, Chris Atkins, Stan Klein and Jim and Tom McKenzie.
The evening was rounded off with delicious Thai taccos made by Stuart McPherson, along with Arran Dairies first vegan ice-cream. This was followed by a raffle for which EcoSavvy had generously donated numerous renewable prizes such as bamboo toothbrushes and silicone freezer bags, all of which are for sale in the Ecosavvy shop.
A terrific evening – thank you EcoSavvy!