Archive for the ‘Action so far…’ Category

Company Secretary runs on vegetable oil

July 12, 2007

David Head, Company secretary, ruralnet|uk is now running his secondhand Peugeot 405 on a mixture of diesel and vegetable oil.

“Interestingly, it’s only older engines that will do this without modification, newer engines are too finely tuned and more modern fuel pumps have difficulty with vegetable oil’s viscosity”, says David.

He’s currently trying a mixture of 80% diesel 20% Sainsbury’s vegetable oil, but hopes to increase the mixture over time.

“First impressions are that the engine seems to run more smoothly than when on fossil diesel alone”, says David.

#3: Sourcing local foods

November 23, 2006

For all in-house catering (buffets for training courses or other hospitality) we make a conscious effort to use caterers who can guarantee that they obtain as much of their food from other local suppliers/sources. Even if the price is not always as competitive.

Obviously bananas and melons are difficult to source from the UK, but in September 2006 when a caterer supplied us with Chilean apples, we felt we had to say something…

#2: Buy 7-day digital timers

November 22, 2006

In preparation for some nasty shocks (pardon the pun!) regarding how much power everything is using, I’ve purchased (from eBay incidentally), four digital timers which can be programmed for weekends as well as weekdays.

The thinking behind this is that we probably don’t need the flyzapper on at night (do flies come out at night?). Alternatively I guess the IT team could take regular showers, at which point there would be no need for a flyzapper, but lets take things one step at a time…

Do we need all of our internal network switches or wireless access points always on?

What about the fax machine (don’t we only get junk faxes at night?).

It’ll become apparent as to where the timers should be used once the results come back from the power-consumption tests.

#1: Monitoring the power useage from appliances

November 22, 2006

After investigation regarding the power monitor plug, I went out and purchased two. Over the following weeks (22 November 2006 till mid-December), I will be plugging in items of equipment to measure the amount of power consumption in daily use. Normal useage and standby amounts will be noted where possible. Results will be reported back later on.

Devices will include:

1. NEC Accusync LCD 72xm LCD displays – we’ve got over 20 of these and it’ll be interesting to see how much power they consume especially if left on standby over night

2. Netgear switches – several of these which run 24/7

3. Wireless access points – again we have several of these which run 24/7

4. Computers – a mixture of laptops and desktops. Some are switched off at night, others aren’t.

5. Coffee machine – in all seriousness this runs for 5 days a week, 7 hours a day. Its quite old and probably very inefficient.

6. Printers – remain switched on 24/7. They’re all pretty new so have built in energy saving functionalities, but just how efficient is that?

7. Fridge – we’ve got three and only one of them is very new. We don’t have SavaPlugs attached to the other two (elderly) ones so who knows how much they currently cost to run. Fitting a SavaPlug and then comparing would be very interesting…

8. Fax machine – obviously on 24/7, but with an energy-saving mode.

9. Telephone system – runs 24/7.

10. Electric fan heaters – this might cause a serious headache!

11. An ‘Insect-O-Cutor’ fly zapper – runs 24/7.

12. Phone chargers – interesting to also see how much is used when the charger is plugged in but not charging anything.

I won’t even consider our server room yet. 😉

#0: Actions speak louder than words!!

November 22, 2006

OK, enough of the news, research and waffle. Time to put the information we’re assimilating into action. What is ruralnet|uk actually doing to become more environmentally friendly.

So read on for our actions so far.