London Mayor Sadiq Khan has this week announced the creation of a £500 million Mayor’s Energy Efficiency Fund which will focus on helping public sector organizations and small businesses to cut carbon emissions.
It should come as no surprise at this point that London’s now-world-famous Mayor Sadiq Khan continues to deliver policies and actions aimed at making London one of the world’s leading environmentally friendly cities. London is home to a growing population of electric taxis and buses, and the Mayor announced last December his intention to expand the Ultra-Low Emission Zone to include London-wide buses, coaches, and lorries, as well as expanding the Zone to include North and South circular roads for all vehicles. Sadiq Khan also announced plans last year to make London the world’s first National Park City with plans to increase the number of trees and green infrastructure around the city.
And only last month, the governing body for the City of London announced plans to source 100% renewable electricity from October 2018, utilizing City Corporation buildings to build more rooftop solar installations and increasing investments into large-scale wind and solar farms.
Continuing efforts to scale up London’s green credibility and reduce its impact on the environment, Sadiq Khan announced on Monday the formation of a £500 million energy fund called the Mayor’s Energy Efficiency Fund (MEEF) which will aim to help public sector buildings cut carbon emissions. The Mayor’s office highlighted a recent report from the Green Finance Taskforce which concluded many public sector organizations and small businesses want to install energy efficiency measures but are not able to access the necessary financing to do so.
The new Fund will work to help hospitals, museums, offices, libraries, social housing, universities, and other public sector organizations access flexible and competitive financing that will help deliver new low-carbon technologies or upgrade existing low-carbon infrastructure. The financing will help deliver measures including battery storage, electric vehicle rapid charging infrastructure, decentralized energy, small-scale renewables, energy efficiency, and low-carbon data centers for boroughs.
The Mayor’s Energy Efficiency Fund will also be open to small businesses and energy service companies operating across London.
“This is the largest fund of its kind in the UK that will help deliver the low-carbon, sustainable projects and infrastructure London needs to cut energy costs and reduce carbon emissions across our universities, hospitals, museums and small businesses,” said Mayor Sadiq Khan. “It is a great example of how the public and private sectors can come together to create millions of pounds of investment for low-carbon projects and help fast-track London towards our goal of becoming a zero-carbon city by 2050.”
London’s Mayor formed the Fund working through the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) and Amber Infrastructure Group and with the support of key commercial lenders including Lloyds Bank, National Westminster Bank, Santander UK, Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation, and Triodos Bank.
“MEEF seeks to address market failure in London’s low-carbon sector by providing flexible and competitive finance to enable, accelerate or enhance viable green infrastructure across London’s boroughs,” explained Joanne Patrick, MEEF Director at Amber Infrastructure Group. “It’s a key part of the Mayor’s strategy to improve the capital’s existing building stock and improve the energy performance of new buildings – helping homes, businesses and public buildings to use less energy and save money on energy bills. We have a proven track record of helping London get greener, having already mobilised over £350 million in low-carbon projects to reduce CO2 emissions by over 35,000 tonnes – equivalent to taking 32,000 cars off the road.”
The Mayor’s Energy Efficiency Fund builds on the existing success of the Mayor’s London Energy Efficiency Fund (LEEF) which helped St. George’s University Hospital Foundation Trust in Tooting install a new power and heating system that stores and recycles heat that is produced from generating electricity — a move that is expected to save the Trust £1.3 million a year on energy bills and reduce over 7,000 tonnes in carbon emissions.
“The NHS is focused on social, financial and environmental sustainability, and this project places St George’s at the forefront of these efforts,” added Kevin Howell, Director of Estates and Facilities at St. George’s. “Ultimately, our aim is to create the best possible environment for our patients, and this new facility will allow us to do that while also maximising cost and energy efficiency.”
Featured image credit: Renault
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