First Utility

April 13, 2012 08:00 ET

Nick Clegg Notes First Utility and Opower Partnership in Green Energy Speech

LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM--(Marketwire - April 13, 2012) - On 11th April Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg delivered a speech on the green economy, including an announcement of how a partnership between UK's cheapest gas and electricity supplier* First Utility and US energy management software company Opower could help Britain's households to save money and energy.

Mr Clegg stated: "The UK still has some of the most energy inefficient buildings in Europe. Fifteen million homes - more than half - are not properly insulated. That's costing us in carbon: a third of our emissions come from heating our homes. And it's costing us in pounds: adding hundreds, every year, to bills for the most inefficient homes."

The Deputy Prime Minister pointed out that one of the major stumbling blocks in encouraging the saving of energy in the UK is households not being aware of how much energy they use in the first place. He went on to explain how a partnership between First Utility and Opower is making strides towards an effective solution.

"From the summer, we'll be trialling a new project with First Utility and America's Opower where consumers are told how much energy other, similar households use. Working with US utilities, Opower has helped encourage American households to reduce consumption by around 2%. That may not sound a lot, but it soon adds up. In the States, they've helped reach around 11 million homes, so far saving people around $85m. We want to see what the same approach could achieve here."

Discussing his company's partnership with Opower, First Utility CEO Ian McCaig commented: "This project is pioneering. It is the first time any such large-scale, information-based energy efficiency programme has been conducted in the UK. Customers will benefit from highly detailed information about their energy consumption as well as comparisons to other similar households. Today is an exciting day for First Utility customers, and for the future of energy in the UK."

In his green economy speech Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg also announced plans to increase transparency among the Big Six energy suppliers, securing a landmark deal to ensure the six companies provide customers with a guaranteed offer of the best tariff for them. It is hoped that the scheme will help customers to save up to £100 a year on their energy bills.

For more information on First Utility's partnership with Opower visit:

About First Utility

First Utility is the smarter independent utilities supplier, offering gas and electricity services to a range of consumer and business customers. It is the only energy provider to roll out smart meters to all its customers, throughout the UK. It is through the use of smart metering technology that First Utility can empower consumers to manage and reduce their own energy consumption and bills. First Utility is headquartered in Warwick.

*First Utility's iSave is the UK's cheapest deal based on an average of all regions and average use of energy (3,300 kWh for Electricity and 16,500 kWh for gas).

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