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YouGen press release

Share your renewable energy knowledge and win a GEO Minim Home Energy Hub

Posted on 9 December 2009 at 2:32 pm

YouGen is calling on people who already generate renewable energy in their home to share their experience so others can learn from it. As a reward, everyone who rates their their supplier on the website will be entered into a monthly draw to win a GEO Minim Home Energy Hub.

“Prices for renewable energy installations such as biomass boilers or solar hot water panels vary enormously,” said YouGen founder Cathy Debenham. “ I know from experience that it’s really difficult to evaluate quotes that can vary by over £10,000. Many people give up and stay with conventional products.

“Most people who have installed renewable energy at home have a story to tell. The YouGen website aims to capture what they’ve learned to make it easier for the next wave of microgenerators. At the heart of the site is the ability to rate your installer, so people new to the market can find one they can trust.”

The need for a service such as this has just been confirmed by research from Oxford University ( which shows prices for wood-fuelled boilers varying from just over £3k to £16.5k, and solar hot water systems prices varying from £1,000 to £8,000.

From December 2008 YouGen will enter everyone who rates their installer / supplier on the site into a draw at the end of each month. The winner will be sent a GEO Minim Home Energy Hub worth £39.50.

“We’re delighted to be able to offer a Minim as the prize in our monthly draw,” added Cathy. “One of the difficulties that most of us have with our energy use is that we don’t understand it. We chose to work with GEO as their energy meter was found the most effective and easy to use in recent research by the Centre for Sustainable Energy.”

“The Minim Home Energy Monitor makes energy relevant to you,” said James Rankin, marketing and UK sales manager at Green Energy Options. “It makes energy visible by showing you, in a snapshot, how much electricity you are using currently and over time, and it displays this in an easy to understand way. It will also indicate when you are using more electricity than normal alerting you to potential wastage so that you can take action to stop it. The Minim uses a ‘speedometer’ to indicate how much electricity is being used as well as showing consumption in £’s, KG’s of carbon and kWh’s.”

Rating a supplier on YouGen is quick and easy. Companies are scored out of five in five categories: service, product knowledge, explanation of how to use the product, value for money and whether the product meets expectations.  They can add comments and are asked if they would use the company again.

“In such a new market, it’s often not possible to ask a friend or colleague for recommendations,” said Cathy Debenham. “Recommendations on YouGen aim to plug that gap, and help people to choose their supplier.”

For more information contact Cathy Debenham, t: 01395 597879, m: 07786 440129, e:, w:

Notes to editors

On YouGen people can:
•    Work out whether a technology is suitable for them
•    Ask an energy expert a question
•    See what other people have done, and learn from their experience
•    Find a recommended local supplier (or help others by recommending theirs)
•    Keep up to date with what’s new in energy efficiency and renewable energy

Benefits of generating our own power and heat at home include:
    * the security of being independent of power companies and dodgy regimes
    * protection from oil and gas price rises
    * lowering carbon emissions, helping to prevent devastating climate change
    * the pleasure of using cutting edge technology

Green Energy Options:

Centre for Sustainable Energy:
Research into what makes a good home energy display

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