London’s £500m fund for net zero

Mayor announces Green Finance Fund to help organisations reach net zero by 2030. Confirmed projects under the scheme include installing solar panels on the London (formerly Olympic) Stadium and Tube depots, with LED lighting at London Underground stations. 

The fund aims to support projects in energy efficiency, clean transport and/or renewable energy. It can be accessed by organisations in the Greater London Authority group, London 32 local authorities, NHS bodies, social housing providers and colleges and universities. They can but for loans between £1m and £75m, with flexible loan terms and lower interest rates than offered by the government’s Public Works Loan Board public sector lending scheme. Funds can be used for capital expenditure. Priority is given to projects that will be operational within the next three years.

Photo by revolution540.

Some high-profile beneficiaries of the funding have already been announced. The London Legacy Development Corporation (LLDC) is being supported to install solar panel membranes on the roof of London Stadium in Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park. Built to host London 2012, the former Olympic Stadium is home to Premier League football club West Ham United and UK Athletics, and has a seating capacity of 60,000. That can be expanded to 80,000 for events such as rock concerts.  

The new solar panels should generate some 10% of the stadium’s current electricity usage and save 270 tonnes in CO2 emissions per year – equal to making 70 homes carbon neutral. 

Transport for London (TfL) will also receive up to £34.2m from the new fund for a range of projects over the next three years. LED lights will be fitted at Underground stations, streetlights will also be replaced with LEDs, new solar panels will be installed at Tube depots and energy efficient improvements will be made to TfL buildings across the city. It’s thought these efforts will save at least 8,900 equivalent tonnes of CO2 per year. 

Mayor of London Sadiq Khan says: ‘We’ve already allocated funding to some exciting projects around London and I’m looking forward to seeing what other green initiatives we can support. The fund is open for applications now so don’t delay. 

‘By working closely together on energy efficiency projects we can help build a better London for everyone, a cleaner and greener city for all. 

Dr Ashok Sinha, CEO of Ashden Climate Solutions and Chair of the London Sustainable Development Commission adds: ‘We are greatly pleased to see the LSDC’s original proposals to the mayor being translated into this important new green finance facility. 

‘Only by mobilising the investment power of the private sector, and matching this to a viable pipeline of projects, will we deliver the level of funding needed to meet the mayor’s target of making London net zero by 2030. This new facility gets London onto the pathway to deliver that funding at the pace and scale needed.’

In related news:

Solar arrays for Glasgow’s landmark buildings


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