UK Daily Mail 
Tuesday, March 24, 2009
Our movements are already tracked by CCTV, speed cameras and even spies in dustbins.
Now snooping on the public has reached new heights with local authorities putting spy planes in the air to snoop on homeowners who are wasting too much energy.
Thermal imaging cameras are being used to create colour-coded maps which will enable council officers to identify offenders and pay them a visit to educate them about the harm to the environment and measures they can take.
A scheme is already under way in Broadland District Council in Norfolk, which has spent £30,000 hiring a plane with a thermal imaging camera.
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It said the exercise has been so successful other local authorities are planning to follow suit.
- A d v e r t i s e m e n t
But critics have warned the crackdown was another example of local authorities extending their charter to poke their noses into every aspect of people’s lives.
Broadland, which covers towns including Aylsham, Reepham and Acle, hired the plane from a Leicestershire-based company for five days at the end of January.
The aircraft took images of homes and businesses, with those losing the most heat showing up as red, while better insulated properties appear blue.
The council’s head of environmental services, Andy Jarvis, said the original plan was to target businesses but it was realised the scope could be extended to include residental properties.
‘The project we put together was for a plane to go up on various nights flying strips of the district and taking pictures,’ he said.