Lobby group London First has said that decentralised energy could save London 3.5 million tonnes of carbon.
In its latest report, researched by Buro Happold, London First called for a collaboration between central government, the Mayor of London and his agencies, energy companies, developers and boroughs towards decentralising a quarter of London’s energy.
Locally placed combined heat and power plants linked to housing estates, and surrounding local amenities and hospitals would, the report claims, make for higher levels of energy efficiency as opposed to centralised power.
Judith Salomon, Director of Planning and Development at London First, said: “Decentralised energy has an important role to play in reducing London’s climate impact. At the moment there are few incentives in place and too many barriers preventing the success of local heat and power generation. Our report offers a series of recommendations which can deliver on the Mayor’s 25% decentralised energy target, by unlocking the £7 billion of private sector investment required.”
According to the report, centralised electricity can lead to extensive waste heat losses from the many miles of high voltage cables required. Cable installation costs are also a factor.
The Mayor's Climate Change Action Plan’s goal is to enable a quarter of London’s energy supply to be moved off the grid and on to local, decentralised systems by 2025, saving 7.2million tones of carbon.
Decentralised energy has an important role to play in reducing London’s climate impact. Our report offers a series of recommendations which can deliver on the Mayor’s 25% decentralised energy target.
Judith Salomon, Director of Planning and Development at London First
The report,Cutting the Capital’s Carbon Footprint, was produced by Buro Happold for a London First-led steering group.
Rod Macdonald, Chairman of Buro Happold, said: “Decentralised energy will allow us to use energy currently wasted in large power stations in a more carbon-efficient manner. Our proposals will deliver a good portion of the carbon savings planned by the Mayor by 2025, and position London as a leader in decentralised energy amongst major free-market cities.”
The report’s recommendations included:
- New incentives for combined heat and power from Government and the energy regulators
- Strategic planning at London and borough level to identify sites for local energy centres and ‘anchor loads’ - existing facilities with high heat demands
- A ‘green energy fund’ whereby developers would build the necessary infrastructure into housing and offices while making payments to support the establishment of future heat networks,
- Energy for London (EfL) to be established as part of the GLA family to champion and deliver a strategic implementation plan for decentralised energy across the capital
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