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Autumn forest Autumn forest with fallen leaves, National Trust and Smart Energy GB logos

What the National Trust is doing to reduce its carbon footprint

The National Trust is working hard to help preserve some of our most beloved heritage and open spaces for future generations, and that involves tackling climate change to help ensure a sustainable future.

In fact, it has pledged to reduce its energy use by 15% by 2021 (compared with a 2009 baseline), and in the same timeframe it is striving towards generating 50% of its energy from renewable sources.

It has now installed hundreds of smart meters at the places it cares for, and it's working to add more. After all, it's much easier to improve efficiency if you know how much energy you're using.

The 'Travel to 2050' experience at Hardwick Hall

'Travel to 2050'


Throughout September and October 2019, we visited six properties with an interactive AR experience.

The 'Travel to 2050' experience transported visitors to the year 2050, showing them what National Trust places and their environment could look like if we don't take action to update our energy system and reduce energy usage.

The 'Travel to 2050' experience at Clumber Park


Rising temperatures and extreme weather are already affecting National Trust sites across the UK. Properties are being damaged by rainwater and flooding, with gardens increasingly affected by drought and disease.

The 'Travel to 2050' activation reminds us of the role that smart meters will play in creating a low carbon future.

What's the link between smart meters and climate change?

Smart meters come with an in-home display screen that shows how much energy you're using in pounds and pence, so it's easy to see where small changes can be made to save you both money and energy.

If everyone got a smart meter, we could save enough energy to power every household in Aberdeen, Cardiff and Manchester for a year.

  • There's more to energy saving than just turning off appliances when they're not in use - check out our energy saving tips to find out more.

Smart meters are an essential first step in creating a new smart energy system which will reduce waste, better manage supply and demand, and ease our transition to renewable energy sources.

Smart meters also have the potential to unlock the development of exciting new technology that will make our homes greener in the future.

Between 16 September and 4 October, we were at:

Clumber Park, Nottinghamshire
Dunham Massey, Greater Manchester
Hardwick, Derbyshire

And from 14 October to 1 November, we visited:

Killerton, Devon
Montacute, Somerset
Trelissick, Cornwall

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