Use less Fossil Fuel and Save More Money!

Reducing your carbon footprint can be achieved by taking steps such as cutting back on fossil fuel consumption, using only renewable energy, making sure your boiler is properly serviced and using your hot water and heating systems frugally. But these measures can only go so far – what if you wanted to run a zero-fossil fuel household?

Morrison Sustainable Energy claims to offer just that, through the combined efficiencies of several innovative utility systems. We spoke to founder James Morrison to find out more.

After initially working in the soffit, fascia and guttering sector, James Morrison developed a passionate interest in renewable energy, particularly air to air heat pumps. About 20 years ago, he discovered the magic of solar hot water panels; this was followed by a new revelation when he first saw solar electric panels at a trade show in Munich. The firm he was working for at the time was keen to get involved and the venture became a success.

“The company that was making the panels was in Durham, but they had never sold any in the UK, they were just exporting,” James said.

“They ended up running three production lines in the factory just to supply us. We were installing them all over the UK.”

Having been instructed to look for more innovative products, James came across thermodynamic systems for hot water. Although promising, the original systems didn’t work very well at all.

“We took it to a factory in Essex and it was developed from there, by myself and various other people, into a solar-assisted hot water system,” James said.

“The original concept has been completely updated and the current incarnation is now sold in 36 countries, from Australia to Europe. The system is 300% more efficient than a conventional gas boiler and consumers can achieve an 80% reduction in fossil fuel use, just by using the hot water system alone. You just need electricity to run the compressor.”

The system combines Morrison’s Solar Assisted Heat Pump technology with an A-rated, KIWA approved stainless steel cylinder. This is how it works: refrigerant liquid is circulated through a big black panel mounted on the exterior of the property, where energy is absorbed from the ambient temperature. This energy transforms the liquid into gas, which then carries the heat energy to be compressed by the Solar Assisted Heat Pump, raising the temperature. After that, the spent gas flows back to the panel to start the process again, while the superheated gas simultaneously heats the water in the cylinder. Once the water reaches 55C, the system goes into standby mode.

The hot water system is used in a broad variety of environments, from houses to cafes to dairy farms – it’s even appeared on an episode of Channel 4’s Grand Designs. Morrison Sustainable Energy offers a 10-year warranty on all its products and has just become a Which? trusted trader. If, however, you want to make the leap to a 100% carbon-free home or premises, you’ll need to embrace more of Morrison’s solutions, which work together to banish carbon.

Far Infrared Radiating Heating Panels work very differently to conventional radiators or heaters. Mounted on walls or ceilings, the infrared system heats solid objects – humans, pets, furniture, walls, floors and so on – instead of heating the air, which can easily escape from the space and need to be reheated.

“It’s about 30% to 40% cheaper to run than all other forms of heating and very efficient,” James said.

“We went to a board meeting in the winter and the infrared heating system was on for about 20 minutes; we didn’t have to turn it back on again until four hours later because everyone was so comfortable all that time. Clients with this solution have also told us that they haven’t had to use so much moisturiser, because it doesn’t dry out their skin as central heating can.”

The infrared heating system can be controlled from anywhere using the smart app and doesn’t require annual servicing. Electricity is required to run the compressor for the Solar Assisted Hot Water System, but if that came from a renewable source – such as your own wind turbine on your property, which Morrison can also supply – you could run a 100% carbon-free system with this combination of solutions.

Other key products and services offered by Morrison include solar batteries and Eco Advanced Power Flushing, which banishes circulation and boiler noise problems by clearing heating systems of sludge and corrosion deposits.

Last year the government announced a ban on gas and oil-fired boilers for new homes from 2025, in a bid to cut back on fossil fuel consumption. That means that now is a good time to get on board the solar-powered movement if you want to cut both your carbon footprint and your energy bills.

“One thing the government hasn’t really told people is that after 2025 if your gas boiler breaks down, you won’t be able to replace it because no one will be making them anymore,” James said. “So, you’ll be forced to move to a renewable energy alternative. This is the time to deal with it and get it done. Plumbers may say that it’ll never happen, but everyone said that about catalytic converters on cars years ago. Just try to find a car without a catalytic converter now!”

Because Morrison’s systems deal with refrigerant gas, rather than household gas, it’s important to ensure a refrigerant gas registered engineer installs solutions such as these. Although there are not many companies other than Morrison that have this registration at the moment, more will inevitably have to move into the market as the drive towards renewable energy picks up pace.

For James, the decision to run your home or commercial premises on renewable energy is an obvious one that everyone should be making, sooner rather than later.

“In one way, the government isn’t going to force you to do it, but it will eventually,” he said. “The whole world is going to do it and the main reason is that there’s no gas and no oil left. People say that there is still plenty in the Arctic and in Alaska, but look at how deep they’re drilling for it and how expensive it is. Some people think that fracking is the answer, but it’s not, because of what it’s doing to the earth.”

“Every house should have solar panels on it, every house should have a small wind turbine, infrared heating panels and a solar-assisted hot water system. Why don’t we stop using fossil fuels and use fresh air, when there’s such an abundance of it?”



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