With the recent publication of the Government's Strategy for Household Energy Management (Warmer Homes, Greener Homes) and the introduction of Pay as You Save, there is no better time to investigate how to carry out environmentally friendly improvements to your home. Pay as You Save allows the cost of energy-saving measures to be paid back over many years - removing a major hurdle to investing in large-scale 'green' improvements.

To help homeowners and others decide which measures could be most beneficial, Haynes have published The Eco House Manual. In keeping with Haynes' practical approach to a wide range of subjects (from cars, motorcycles, to babies), The Eco House Manual offers concise information, sensible advice and step-by-step projects for your home and garden.

A wide range of subjects are covered including construction materials, insulation, heating, electricity use, water supply and waste. There are sections to help you work out how well (or badly) your house is insulated and how long a wind turbine will take to pay for itself. Grants that may be available are covered as are building regulations and planning permission. Another section deals with gardens - everything from composting to encouraging wildlife.

The author, Nigel Griffiths, ran his own building business for 15 years, specialising in conservation and green building, and project-managed a development of 12 new eco-homes in Somerset. He is a building consultant, a visiting university lecturer on sustainability, and an eco-homes assessor for the Building Research Establishment. He writes in a clear, easy-to-understand style, which is complemented by many colour photographs and informative diagrams.