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The Convo top ten – the eco edition

Green planet lying in grass

From clearing up the confusion on renewable energy to phasing out disposable batteries, there have been lots of green discussions this week. Read on for our round-up of more of this week’s top Conversations.

Is offering £98 PCs money well spent?

In this time of budget cuts, is a scheme to sell £98 PCs to those who’ve yet to embrace broadband a good way to spend public money? Our computing editor, Sarah Kidner, thinks so.

Why don’t we phase out disposable batteries?

Hazel Cottrell responded to the news that half of us have never recycled a battery with the suggestion that we phase out disposables altogether. Is this a good idea? Judging by your comments, it’s a complex issue. ‘It pains me to say this, but we’re probably wasting more energy/carbon etc recharging [disposables] than is involved in making them,’ said Jo G.

Is BMW losing the essence of the real Mini?

Mini-lover Rob Hull has had a glimpse of the new Mini Paceman and he’s not happy – but what do you think about it? Ash says, ‘it should be called large’ and Kingsley asks, ‘can anyone think of a new version of a classic that lives up to the original? It’s a bit like films based on books – they’re never as good’. Not a great reception then.

No wonder we’re confused about renewable energy

When we reported on a survey showing how confused Brits are about renewable energy for their homes, Dave Darwent had some advice: ‘Speak to people who have a successful installation of whatever technology you are interested in, get the details of their suppliers/installers and start from there.’

Will you join the fight to save wasted fish?

Do you think it’s wrong that perfectly good fish are being chucked back into the ocean due to EU quotas? If so, are you one of the 500,000 plus people that have been following Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall’s Fish Fight?

Are the new minimum alcohol prices right?

You had lots to say on this week’s announcements about the minimum prices for alcohol. ‘This is a pointless move. Those who want to binge drink will always find the money somehow,’ said Colin. Simon Price disagreed, ‘Sensible public health policy. Like the smoking ban, why have we waited so long?’

Do you miss the printed instruction booklet?

Have you bought an electrical item recently? If so did it come with a printed instruction booklet – or did you have to go online to find it, like Alric? ‘If manufacturers expect you to use an online manual will they please make that clear and make finding it a bit easier than this,’ he said.

Does social media have a role in high street banking?

Banking giant Citi has launched a new Twitter account to deal with customer complaints. Could the UK banking sector benefit from such social media customer service?

Can you get away without anti-virus protection?

Do you need to laden your PC down with lots of paid-for security software to stay safe from viruses? Not according to assistant computing editor Arlene Martin – or to many of our commenters who posted lots of good suggestions for steering clear of paid-for protection.

Is DIY home maintenance a dying art?

According to a new survey, men’s DIY skills could die out by 2048 – a statement that caused a lot of controversy, but mostly among women who felt left out. ‘I’m a little bit annoyed with the AA for reporting only on how men feel about DIY, implying it’s a masculine activity. It’s not – it’s rewarding,’ fumed our own Nikki Whiteman.