We’re trying to make energy (and the world) better for everyone.
Here's some of stuff we've done over the years to make this happen faster.
- To accelerate the transition to green energy, we invested £5,000,000 into the creation of the Centre for Net Zero: an arms-length non-profit devoted to researching a low-carbon future energy system
- To fight racism and inequality in energy, we pledged £108,000 towards an Octopus Black Lives Matter fund
- To make sure the future of heating is green and affordable for all, we’re investing £10,000,000 to build a centre devoted to R&D into heat decarbonisation. (Still a bit of a secret, but we might’ve dropped a few hints)
But this work continues all the way back to when we started, just over five years ago.
Making energy greener for all
We’re on a mission to make green energy affordable and accessible for all. We're doing it by building ground-breaking tech to drive genuine, global system change.
Here’s an in-depth write-up of how we’re working to make energy greener for everyone.
After three years, we’re still the only company in the UK offering people energy that gets cheaper when the grid is greener: through Agile Octopus, through our Octopus Fan Club with cheap power for locals near Octopus wind turbines, or even through our Future Energy trials for customers with smart meters.
We’re encouraging a more democratic and cooperative energy system: we’ve set up a separate company devoted to supporting UK community energy projects, paying small communities a fair price for their power.
We’re the first energy company in the UK to build a ‘smart’ way to pay people with solar panels for their power.
When the grid needs a little boost in the evening peak, I’m only too happy to help out with my stored ☀️ power -— Jesse Bryce (@jesseb4me) April 13, 2021
Getting paid 37p/kWh for dumping 50% of my home 🔋 to the grid on @octopus_energy #agile tariff, as displayed so nicely by @myenergiuk!#renewable #energy pic.twitter.com/EGPtqT8atS
Making energy prices fairer
Price trickery is notorious in the energy industry – in fact, Octopus was founded to combat it.
From day one we deployed data science, political campaigning and even an infamous stunt in a Soho pub to highlight dirty tactics used by legacy energy companies to rip off consumers – likely to be the most vulnerable and low-income households.
Back in 2016, when we were brand new, we analysed major suppliers’ tariffs, exposing what we call ‘Tease and Squeeze’ tactics: where you’re reeled in on a below-cost introductory price, and then sneakily moved onto an extortionate rate as soon as your fixed term is over.
We worked with MoneyBox’s Michael Roberts to spread our findings far and wide – here’s his writeup on the BBC.
After that, we fought for a price cap in energy to put a stop to these tactics.
We worked with other awesome people running campaigns, spoke to politicians across the aisle, I even spoke in Parliament about it, until a law was passed. In the final bill hearings, MPs quoted our research to help get the bill through.
And it worked.
Here’s my statement from the day the price cap became law, capping the maximum amount a supplier could charge customers and saving millions of Brits hundreds of pounds every year.
Since then, we’ve never given up pressure on fellow power companies to ensure people aren’t getting a rip-off deal.
This continued into the pandemic, where I went on many major networks and spoke out against legacy energy suppliers lobbying to be allowed to charge customers preemptively for other people’s bad debt as a result of the pandemic.
We made sure no one was out of a job and could easily work from home, or where their job involved visiting people’s homes, (like smart meter installers) we helped keen team members provide crucial delivery services, bringing food parcels, medication etc to local sheltering and vulnerable people.
At the same time, we never faltered in looking after customers (our research suggested we were the only large energy supplier to keep answering the phones as normal in lockdown) and campaigned for government aid for customers throughout the pandemic where some legacy suppliers lobbied to receive that aid instead of it going directly to customers.
To help stop people getting ripped off by nefarious energy tactics, we’ve partnered with the Literacy Trust to research what people don’t understand about their bills, making key info about household outgoings clearer.
Bringing equality to energy
Last year, we pledged £108,000 to help combat racism and inequality in energy via our Octopus Black Lives Matter fund.
We’ve already launched a series of internships – the first one, our Ada Lovelace internship – to help show the next generation what a career in the future of energy looks like, and to bring more people from underrepresented groups into the tech and energy industries.
We’ve got a very exciting update to come about the work that’s been done to put this money to use in the last year.
We’re staunch advocates of web accessibility for all: fighting to make digital experiences genuinely better for people with disabilities, not only constantly monitoring the accessibility of our customer experience....
...but calling on and helping other businesses do the same to create a truly equitable digital world for everyone: our head of front-end development even wrote an instructive book to building inclusive web experiences.
I started Octopus to spur the green energy revolution. Climate change is the most pressing and urgent issue our world faces, and to truly affect global change, we need to take progressive steps to make energy affordable, accessible, and genuinely equitable for all.
I hope what we've done so far is a start towards that future.
Hey I'm Constantine, welcome to Octopus Energy!×Close window