Thursday, December 1, 2022
HomeNewsWest Leeds social enterprise 'saves £4,700 from switching light bulbs' - and calls for...

West Leeds social enterprise ‘saves £4,700 from switching light bulbs’ – and calls for new environmental loan scheme

Social enterprise Open Source Arts has saved over 5,500 kg of carbon equivalent emissions and more than £4,700 a year just from switching to LED light bulbs in their new studio spaces.

And now they are calling on Leeds City Council to start a new loans scheme to help other businesses take this step. 

Open Source Arts (OSA) works with emergent artists, organisations, creative business and other communities to enhance Leeds’ creative community and help the movement towards the sustainable future we all want.

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They have recently acquired a new space on Kirkstall Road which they have converted into studio pods for local artists and creatives to have their own space to work and develop their practice. 

They believe that resilience comes from diversity of connection and skills and when communities are diverse and well connected they are stronger. OSA’s studios will work to bring resilience and strength to Leeds’ creative community as they continue growing their own creative hub and community close to the city centre. 

As part of their conversion OSA saw the opportunity to make some huge carbon and cost savings; primarily by swapping out all the existing lighting for more cost effective, carbon saving, efficient LEDs. 

The move comes as energy bills hit record highs, pushing many into fuel poverty. A spokesperson said:

“Not only are ordinary families being failed by their own government as they are left in precarious positions but oil and gas companies made record profits with BP raking in £9.45 billion and chief executive referring to the company as a ‘cash machine’. 

“In these challenging times it is vital all businesses, and individuals, are able to take positive action to reduce their energy demands whilst simultaneously taking climate action and reducing their emissions.”

Open Source Arts are now pondering the possibility of a loan scheme helping households, businesses and organisations across the UK to take steps to reduce their energy bills and carbon emissions. The spokesperson added:

“Could this take the form of a scheme whereby a loan is used to cover the cost of the changes and then repaid over time from the savings made?  

“If local authorities or our national government are serious about transitioning to a low carbon and sustainable future then a scheme of this style could go a long way.

“For example, lighting improvements in commercial and industrial facilities has been identified in Leeds Climate Commission’s ‘Net-Zero Carbon Roadmap for Leeds’ as a primary cost effective way to reduce carbon – with lighting improvements in office and retail buildings projected to have the potential to save 495,000,000 kg CO2e.” 

Open Source Arts empowers creative, practical action towards healthier, more resilient citizens, neighbourhoods and sustainable futures.

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