ENERGY smart meters are going up on library shelves alongside the latest thrillers.

Reading borough libraries are loaning out the Owl meters like books, letting people see exactly how much electricity they are using.

People may be prompted to change some wasteful habits, or buy their own meters to keep a permanent check on their energy usage.

Reading East Green campaigner Rob White said it was a victory for his campaign to get more people using the meters, adding: "We are in the middle of a recession and everyone wants to save money.

"These energy-smart meters will help people reduce their electricity bills, saving money and tackling climate change at the same time. This is a great result for Reading and the Green Party. With the smart meter, you can see how much electricity you are using in real-time.

"You can see it go up when you put the kettle on and you can see it go down when you turn off appliances that are on standby.

"The librarian was telling me that before they were on the shelves, staff were borrowing them and testing them at home to see how they work and they loved the idea."

Industry estimates suggest people can save 25% on their electricity bills just by turning off everything they usually leave on standby.

Mr White said the party was also campaigning for a free loft and cavity wall insulation scheme, similar to an initiative being successfully rolled out in Kirklees, Yorkshire.