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Is your energy supply vegan?

August 5, 2018

By Paul Homewood


The mind boggles!


We’re more conscious than ever about the impact our buying choices have on the planet. But the energy industry still hides a secret about how it uses animals in its energy production.

You’ve got a right to know how your energy is made, so you can choose a supplier that fits your principles. Here’s everything you need to know about vegan energy, and how to switch to an animal-free supplier.

What is vegan energy?

Vegan energy is the production of electricity or gas that doesn’t involve the use of animals or animal by-products.

There are two main sources of non-vegan energy generation in the UK: anaerobic digestion (AD), and biomass. Both AD and biomass energy production can contain by-products of animal farming – like factory-farmed livestock, slaughterhouse waste, fish parts, and animal slurry.

While energy providers are required by Ofgem to declare the fuel mix of the energy they supply, there’s no obligation to declare whether animals are used in its production.

What’s the difference between green energy and vegan energy?

Green energy is the production of electricity or gas through renewable sources, in place of traditional fossil fuels. Green energy is produced by harnessing power from solar, wind, wave and tidal sources.

But just because an energy supply is green, it doesn’t make it vegan.

Many green energy companies, like Good Energy, Bulb, and Octopus, supply electricity that’s been generated using animals or animal by-products.

List of UK energy suppliers who use animal by-products in their fuel supply.


Do vegans really object to burning poo?

  1. Broadlands permalink
    August 5, 2018 11:40 am

    Biofuel energy is no different from fossil fuel energy. When it is used as a fuel the resulting CO2 is put back in the atmosphere. Only permanent safe burial can effectively take CO2 from the atmosphere long-term. That’s what took Nature millions of years to do. Humans cannot hope to duplicate that in meaningful amounts by moving “biomass” around as a fuel.

    • August 6, 2018 6:13 pm

      As an anti-green dogma person I think your argument is flawed.
      If you have a straw field the idea or forest the idea is that burning this years straw emits CO2, which is then balanced by an equal absorption of CO2 by next years crop.
      But in reality there are also inefficiency losses in transport and burning
      and per MWh generated such losses for fossil fuels are much small cos a truckload of fossil fuel generates magnitudes more energy than a truckload of straw.

  2. Bloke down the pub permalink
    August 5, 2018 11:43 am

    Dale Vince, the owner of ecotricity, has a stately pile on the hill top that my house faces. I dare say that his sh!t doesn’t stink but I’ve never heard it claimed that sending it to an anaerobic digester would contaminate it. If the use of animals in energy production is a no-no, then the same presumably applies to food production. When the greens send us back to year zero, we’ll have to pull the ploughs by human power, without even the benefit of a Shire horse.

    • August 5, 2018 11:55 am

      Eventually there will be no horses, nor cows nor chickens. The way to have populations of animals is to have them be valuable to man. So those which have been domesticated will be history if these folks have their way should they become “useless” and also unable to survive on their own.

      A couple of decades ago, PETA wanted to force pet owners to turn out their dogs and cats to fend for themselves. They argued they were “freeing” them. These folks are just plain cruel.

      • Sheri permalink
        August 5, 2018 2:28 pm

        Environmentalists are constantly attacking pet ownership. Your pet eats meat and that’s bad for the planet. So the pet has to go.

      • Bloke down the pub permalink
        August 5, 2018 6:03 pm

        During the economic crash of 2008, horses became an expensive hobby that owners could no longer afford and many suffered because they had no economic value. HRH the Princess Royal encouraged getting more horses put into the human food chain because this would increase their paper value and mean that they were better looked after during their life.

      • Russ Wood permalink
        August 8, 2018 3:10 pm

        I think there are still going to be cows and chickens. After all, there is the principle called “The Survival Of The Tastiest”. Otherwise, we’d be having brontosaurus burgers and Kentucky-fried pterodactyl!

      • August 9, 2018 11:15 am

        Russ Wood. That was my point. Those animals survive because we eat them. At this point, many could not survive on their own and they are too domesticated. And PETA stands for “‘People Eating Tasty Animals.”

    • Ben Vorlich permalink
      August 5, 2018 7:54 pm

      Nor will you be able to put the by products of Shire Horses on your rhubarb to sell at the local vegan farmers market.

    • August 5, 2018 8:25 pm

      Don’t suppose he has a commanding view of the ugly turbine up at Nympsfield? Is it his?

      • Bloke down the pub permalink
        August 6, 2018 12:05 pm

        Yes it is one of his and he can see it from Rodborough Fort.

  3. August 5, 2018 11:47 am

    I apologise for being a bit thick here, but since all electricity producers feed their product into the common supply grid, how do I know that my electricity is green?

    • August 5, 2018 11:57 am

      Who said you could introduce facts to this saga?

    • saparonia permalink
      August 5, 2018 12:17 pm

      It isn’t. Your supplier uses your money to contribute to the pool and you take from the pool. your supplier has a choice of where they fund production.

    • Gerry, England permalink
      August 5, 2018 3:16 pm

      You don’t – it is a sales con but before rushing to complain you will find all the 100% green energy mob have a small print disclaimer. I am currently with Outfoxthemarket simply because it is cheap. Most others charge you a virtue-signalling tax for being that stupid. One quote I got was £400 higher than my existing supplier. Of course there is the delicious irony of them writing to you to inform of an increase due to the rise in wholesale gas prices. If you query why your 100% green energy should be affected by this it is because they just buy energy in the market.

    • dennisambler permalink
      August 6, 2018 10:04 pm

      When “renewable” electricity is in the mix, your socket outlets should glow a nice delicate green….

  4. John Palmer permalink
    August 5, 2018 11:56 am

    What a load of sanctimonious, virtue-signalling (sorry) bulls**t!

  5. Adrian permalink
    August 5, 2018 11:57 am

    Hey I’ve been a veggie for much of my life, I’ve dabbled with veganism but realised I was too weak, I even have some bl..dy odd ideas, but boy there are some total kooks out there.

    I suppose this shows what happens to the human gene pool when you circumvent natural selection with societal support for those too stupid for their own good.

    • Sheri permalink
      August 5, 2018 2:28 pm

      Excellent comment!

    • HotScot permalink
      August 5, 2018 9:11 pm


      Nothing wrong with vegetables as long as they’r not crammed down my throat.

      Good luck to you mate and I echo Sheri’s sentiment.

    • August 7, 2018 11:09 am

      So true. In a time, long, long ago these folks would not have survived. Ironically, they seem to be the ones pushing us back to that age where you were subject to the environment and survival was a struggle. In botany we refer to it is “being removed from the gene pool.”

  6. saparonia permalink
    August 5, 2018 12:13 pm

    I was pretty horrified when I found that waste from animal torture and death camps is powering my home. I don’t eat anything that comes from those places and wasn’t informed that almost every energy supplier is using it.

    • HotScot permalink
      August 5, 2018 9:14 pm


      Ah!….Animal torture.

      Sorry, they didn’t reveal their sources after extensive water boarding so were dispensed with.

  7. saparonia permalink
    August 5, 2018 12:14 pm

    I saw an ad I think it was on a flyer, that’s when I looked at the small print on my suppliers website

  8. Broadlands permalink
    August 5, 2018 12:16 pm

    Higher forms of life are either phototrophs or heterotrophs. The former are the sources of food for the latter. It all comes down to photosynthesis vs respiration. Whatever it is that animals “eat” (or combust elsewhere) was ultimately derived from plants. Animals use the oxygen the plants provided to recycle the carbon as CO2. The only way around that is bury the “food” as organic carbon (or as carbonate in the oceans). This is why “negative emission” technologies are being heavily relied on to “save the planet” from ourselves.

    • HotScot permalink
      August 5, 2018 9:15 pm


      We hunt them or they hunt us. Take your choice.

  9. Martin Davey permalink
    August 5, 2018 1:20 pm

    I have just double checked to make sure this is not April 1st

    • August 5, 2018 6:55 pm

      I used to think that human stupidity couldn’t go any worse, but I keep being proved wrong.

    • HotScot permalink
      August 5, 2018 9:19 pm

      Martin Davey

      It’s the anniversary of April fools day silly.

      Exactly 5 months and 4 days after the memorable day.

      You watch, there’s a silly story every 5 months and 4 days following April Fools day.

      There’s a silly story every day in between, but that’s beside the point.

      Tomorrow will be the 5 month and 5th day April Fools day anniversary. Mark my words.

  10. Immune to propaganda permalink
    August 5, 2018 1:27 pm

    This could confirm there is indeed a parallel universe – the eco fascists world, and our world.

  11. August 5, 2018 1:35 pm

    Reblogged this on HiFast News Feed.

  12. August 5, 2018 2:40 pm

    Since apparently all energy supplies are “contaminated”, how will vegans survive?
    I admire vegans for their moral stand but it would be impossible for everyone to adopt their life-style.

    • Phoenix44 permalink
      August 5, 2018 3:56 pm

      What “moral stand”? They live off the back of animals all over the place, both in every day life and in what they consume that was invented and made available in the past 500-600 years or more. They are only able to survive because they are incredibly selective about their “morals” and they are free-ride off everybody else.

      When they stop using any and all drugs that have been tested on animals at some point, then let’s see how long they last.

    • HotScot permalink
      August 5, 2018 9:27 pm


      “I admire vegans for their moral stand but it would be impossible for everyone to adopt their life-style.”

      What utter, complete, uninformed balderdash!

      We’ll have eat a vegan day, then we’ll all be replete in our personal sanctimonious zeal.

  13. Curious George permalink
    August 5, 2018 3:14 pm

    What a fantastic problem they are solving. They should expand the vegan-energy web page into a bestselling book of 250 pages or more.

  14. John F. Hultquist permalink
    August 5, 2018 3:39 pm

    Vegans and vegetarians :
    B-12; please read

    ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
    Some places hydro-power is considered renewable, other places not so.
    Regardless, dams flood living space for many animals, and kill fish, such as salmon.
    If this makes hydro-power non-vegan — We are guilty because almost 100% of our electricity comes from dams on the Columbia River in Washington State. We have no choice as there is only one local utility.

    • HotScot permalink
      August 5, 2018 9:30 pm

      John F. Hultquist

      When fish can represent themselves in parliament, then they can object to being killed. Otherwise, they remain at best, food, a noble calling.

  15. Phoenix44 permalink
    August 5, 2018 3:58 pm

    If you can’t use animal poo energy, you can’t use animal fertilised food either can you? So that’s just about all food out.

  16. Gerry, England permalink
    August 5, 2018 4:03 pm

    Post no deal Brexit we will be grateful for whatever we can get. I was fully aware that the electricity interconnectors will shut down once we leave the Single Energy Market but there is probably a bigger problem looming for gas supplies. Problems highlighted here: The delay in seeking new onshore gas sources is bad news.

    • August 5, 2018 7:02 pm

      Thanks for that paper, Gerry.

    • HotScot permalink
      August 5, 2018 9:42 pm

      Gerry, England

      If the price is right, the interconnectors will remain.

      From you paper:

      “energy security is about ensuring that we
      have access to the energy services (physical
      security) at prices that avoid excessive
      volatility (price security). It is also assumed
      that the future role of gas must be compliant
      with the Climate Change Act (2008) and
      its associated Carbon Budgets.”

      In other words, no European country has declared war on the UK so energy security is OK. The price aspect is a matter of negotiation, do they want an easy buck or not. And as soon as either security or price is threatened, you will see the Climate Change Act being converted right out the window, anti frackers will follow and there will be “a new energy revolution” for the MSM to take credit for.

    • It doesn't add up... permalink
      August 6, 2018 6:53 pm

      Fortunately very little of our gas imports come from the EU pipelines to Belgium and the Netherlands (and indeed, in the summer time we’re usually acting as an offshore LNG terminal, pumping gas to Europe. Incidentally, most of that gas that does come from Norway in the first place via pipelines into Emden and the Zeepipe to Zeebrugge, or from LNG cargoes discharged at nearby ports that could easily divert to the UK. We have separate transportation treaties with Norway for the pipelines that supply us directly – and Norway is outside the EU.

      The risk comes from our lack of storage, with extra supply on the pipelines making up for it in cold weather such as the Beast from the East. Next time we will have to rely even more on extra LNG imports. Fortunately there is rising availability, particularly as in winter Yamal LNG must discharge in Europe. You will note that our LNG imports recently have been lower than they used to be, mainly becuase we have good availability form Norway for now at least. It is hard to see the EU being a source of gas that we are missing out on, especially since France has gone all anti-fracking. The Netherlands is a declining source (and its biggest, Groningen, field is in any case not connected to the BBL line, since it produces low CV gas, which is consumed locally in the Netherlands, nearby Germany and Belgium.

  17. August 5, 2018 8:13 pm

    N-Power are putting cattle-manure in their ‘feedstock’? How does that work?

  18. Ben Vorlich permalink
    August 5, 2018 8:27 pm

    This raises an interesting question for vegans. How far back in the food chain do you to be free from animal energy. Animal poo and other waste for crop growing obviously à no-no. What about Nitrogen based fertiliser is usually made using ammonia production of ammonia requires a lot of energy.
    L think there’s money to made here, à market garden using seaweed and wood ash fertiliser harvested using an electric tractor charged with electricity from ecotricity.

    • HotScot permalink
      August 5, 2018 9:44 pm


      Vegans go back about as far as eating organic animal poo directly. Now you know why I chose a carnivore as a wife, I don’t like kissing poo eaters.

  19. Malcolm Skipper permalink
    August 5, 2018 9:44 pm

    Yes, how far back? Ecotricity wants green energy from grass biodigesters. However doesn’t grass grow through photosynthesis of carbon dioxide – a (waste) by-product from animals?
    “Vegan energy is the production of electricity or gas that doesn’t involve the use of animals or animal by-products.”

  20. August 6, 2018 3:56 am

    I’ve had numerous conversations on facebook with Dale Vince, once he cannot cope he has me barred from the thread. The bloke cultist coward.

    • Adam Gallon permalink
      August 6, 2018 9:20 am

      Same here.

  21. Iain Reid permalink
    August 6, 2018 6:38 am

    Hello Gerry,

    “I was fully aware that the electricity interconnectors will shut down once we leave the Single Energy Market ”

    The French interconnector pre dates the E.U. and was built to take advantage of the differing peak loads, i.e it is a mutual benefit. I think today we buy more than we supply France however it is in neither countries’ interest to open the link.
    However, in some ways if the interconnectors are opened it may be beneficial to the U.K. as it should concentrate the minds of those who are responsible for\ electricity security to build more reliable power plants!

    • dave permalink
      August 6, 2018 9:37 am

      “…to open the link…”

      I guess you mean in the sense of ‘disconnect’ rather than in the sense of ‘start up’!

      But, I agree, why borrow trouble? Or bow down to Project Fear?
      That would be like believing in CAGW, and begging Wadhams to take charge and save the ice!

    • Ben Vorlich permalink
      August 6, 2018 10:33 am

      The French Inter-Connector is interesting. These days power predominantly goes to the continent overnight. During the day usually more power comes into The UK making the UK a net-importer. The Dutch one is more random and currently some of the French electricity is being re-exported to Holland, but again the UK is a net-importer from Holland

  22. Bitter@twisted permalink
    August 6, 2018 7:04 am

    Beyond parody.

  23. Up2snuff permalink
    August 6, 2018 11:15 am

    I assume the ‘Green Energy’ movement would ‘approve’ if their wind turbine bearings are lubricated with a castor oil plant derivative, but would go into ‘meltdown’ if the same bearings were lubricated with an fossil fuel oil-based derivative.

    Jus’ askin’ ……

  24. Tim Spence permalink
    August 6, 2018 12:10 pm

    Beyond parody, beyond rational analysis, beyond mental stability, beyond laughing stock.

    The left will eat itself, Vogon poetry is more sane than Vegan diatribe.

  25. Simon from Ashby permalink
    August 6, 2018 12:27 pm

    Is Coal Vegan?

    • Up2snuff permalink
      August 6, 2018 2:53 pm

      Possibly. Probably.

      Back in the ‘old days’ it was well known that infants, upon acquiring some horizontal mobility would, not long afterwards, crawl to the coal scuttle (remember them?) and exercise on same in preparation for future bi-pedial locomotion. Observing the scuttle’s contents from a standing position, they then might try to reward themselves – as a carbon-based life form – for all that physical effort, as well as acquiring some sustenance for the return journey, with a bit of a nibble on something containing plenty of carbon.

      Additionally, coal nibbling may well have helped with preparation in much later life for tackling expensive tough, tasteless organic vegetables as part of a Vegan diet.

      The revival of 21st century face painting and tattooing may well trace its roots to the cold, almost frozen decades of the middle of the 20th century and the resultant joyous smearing of coal black around noses, mouths, hands and soft furnishings by infants in a strange rite that may have had prophetic under- and over-tones for a freezing future in the middle decades of the twenty-first century.

  26. Farmer Sooticle permalink
    August 6, 2018 1:52 pm

    Reminds me of the joke (but it’s not a joke):
    Q. How do you know if someone is a vegan?
    A. They tell you.

  27. August 6, 2018 4:18 pm

    \\ No animal by-products. 100% green. Ethical energy.
    Be sure of what’s in your energy mix.
    Join the only energy company in the world to register its electricity with The Vegan Society//

    Really ?? zero animals are harmed when you MINE American forests and ship them all the way to Drax ?
    ..I bet per MWh generated the eco impact of coal mining is lower.
    Actually such forest cutting should have ecological impact assessment in its planning permission.

    • Bloke down the pub permalink
      August 7, 2018 8:15 am

      I don’t know if ecotricity buy any of their electric from Drax. If they do, then this would definitely be one for the Advertising Standards Authority.

  28. August 7, 2018 12:55 am

    Slightly OT Paul but the MSM is full of this:
    Note the author acknowledges that there is disagreement in ONE sentence then proceeds to quote alarmists in agreement.

    • dave permalink
      August 7, 2018 10:09 am

      As I say, ‘they’ are in their ‘rapture phase’ – which involves sometimes gleeful and sometimes fearful quoting of the signs and portents of universal punishment. Either that, or they are not taking their lithium.

      Meanwhile, on the actual planet which is third from the sun:

  29. August 7, 2018 1:37 pm

    Is it true that wind turbines kill ZERO birds/bats ?
    Are they vegan ?

    There should be bird mortality statistics

  30. Charlie Flindt permalink
    August 12, 2018 5:16 pm

    Mr Vince has also teamed up with a local agricultural college…while singing the vegan song.

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