Ukraine and rising energy bills mean it’s time to ditch oil

Mr. Putin seems to have created a bit of a mess when we need it least.

It’s hard enough for most as it is with rising energy bills and now we see the shock to oil prices, but it has only quickened the spirits of those who see the benefits of not using it at all.

We use a lot of oil in West Norfolk. And that will have to change. Personally, we have gone from around 3000 liters per year to 700-900 thanks to energy savings over the years and now we are switching to electric heaters, we will be free from it forever. Those 700 liters could cost £1,400 right now.

Prospector 1 oil rig. Drone photo by Paddy Regan of Kent Aerial Photography

This will be our savings when we move on and I know the electricity needed to run the new smart heaters will be nowhere near that of the increased electricity bills as I tested one in the old workshop this winter. A 9m x 5m single skin shed/barn type workshop, uninsulated, cost £220 to heat this winter, last year using an electric heater and gas cylinders we spent £350 to heat the building. Modern electric heating is cheaper than oil and, in some cases, gas. Infrared panel heaters for point-of-use heating are great when you need a little warmth without heating up the whole house.

We can be done with oil. With transportation being the biggest consumer of oil, we need to change and transition quickly, while ensuring that the service sector that exists for internal combustion engine vehicles can retrain and learn new skills for what is required. on electric vehicles.

By switching to an electric vehicle or using public transport where you save hundreds or even thousands of pounds every year, you are done with oil immediately. Take a calculator, enter the amount you spend monthly on diesel or gasoline. Multiply it by 12. That’s your savings. Now start looking at public transport or taxi fares when looking for alternatives. I know a lot of people who have given up on cars and use a local taxi company or car cost sharing so their driving needs are infrequent. They are done with oil.

That said, with the public transport infrastructure being so poor in rural West Norfolk, unless you live in King’s Lynn, Watlington or Downham Market, you can’t walk to catch a train! You have to drive. which consumes oil.

We also have a skills shortage and this is reflected in our industry and many businesses, including ours, are booked so far in advance that we have temporarily stopped accepting new clients for the immediate future. We all need more quality electricians, more solar and battery technicians, more roofers, more electrical engineering apprenticeships and electrical contractor companies. This will help to get rid of the oil.

Many young people leaving school today will only ever have known a life where solar panels and electric vehicles are ‘normal’ and ‘part of life’. Imagine being able to say you’ve spent your whole life in renewable energy and making the planet a better place?

School leavers who get that exact opportunity. We take no greater pride than knowing that our partner companies all have apprenticeship programs. These 19 year olds, the only job they’ve ever had, are creating a better place for all of us. They are done with oil.

Buses are so infrequent that you cannot get to Lynn if you live in many West Norfolk villages. So we have to drive. which consumes oil. We need better public transport. Which would put an end to oil.

Our own 8-year-old used electric vehicle, which cost £6,500 at Stebbings five years ago, drives around 5,000 miles a year: £30-40 a year in fuel costs when mostly charged via solar, £150 if powered directly from the grid. , when I last calculated the finances a few years ago. I don’t know how much 5,000 miles in diesel would cost today: £700? £800? But these are our savings.

We got the electric car for many reasons, one being that I was one of those who hoped that after two decades in the Middle East the oil wars would be over and the transition to a more cleaner and greener would be on merit, on environmental benefits, on financial benefits and all the other reasons why people choose clean, green and free energy.

Today it is Europe. It is separated and facilitated from within, and it is about oil, resources, old ideas and wealth; fight for the remains of what remains to be drilled.

We end our addiction and change the world. And what’s frustrating is that as sure as the sunrise we can sit by the river and watch the tide rise and fall and feel the wind on our face and know we have the solutions for get rid of oil.


Kevin Holland

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