Monthly Archives: February 2016

Nine Elms District Heating Progress

February 2016:  “SSE Enterprise Utilities has delivered a low carbon multi-utility solution for a new residential and commercial development on the banks of the Thames.
Hundreds of properties at the Riverlight development will be served by an energy centre housing a Combined Heat and Power (CHP) unit, gas fired boilers and ground source heat pumps. Installation and ownership of the water, gas and electricity networks on site means that SSE Enterprise Utilities is providing a true multi-utility service.” Read full SSE news release here. A case study on the project is available here and video here.

Also just released is news from  district heating provider Vital Energi that they won a contract at Nine Elms Point, which will see them install a CHP energy centre, connecting a  further 645 homes to a heat network at this major regeneration site. Nine Elms Point is being delivered in partnership with Sainsbury and Barratt London and Vital have won the contract to perform the installation of the main Energy Centre, Chiller Plant Room and Heat Substations, in addition to all the works to residential and commercial properties, including Hydraulic Interface Units, Cooling Interface Units and Heat Meters in a contract worth £8 million.”

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Fuel Cell in the City

February 2016: Neil Pennell, Head of Engineering and Design, at Land Securities discusses how the City has embraced the need for efficient design and eco-friendly power generation, highlighting the One New Change development – which uses a ground source heat pump, and 20 New Fenchurch Street (‘walkie talkie’) tower, which utilises a fuel cell. Read Neil’s blog here. Specifications of the fuel cell can be seen here. More on fuel cells in London here.

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Food poverty and fuel poverty go hand in hand

26 February 2016: Sarah Chapman  a volunteer and trustee at Wandsworth foodbank writes in the New Statesman on Fuel Poverty Awareness Day that “It’s no surprise that food poverty and fuel poverty are close friends; two spokes in the wheel of wider deprivation, or adjacent seats on the rollercoaster that’s life on a low/no income. We see this every day at our foodbank centres across Wandsworth. If you haven’t got money for food, you’re unlikely to have enough to “burn on gas”, as one guest, a security guard, told me.” Read the full article here. Full information on Fuel Poverty Awareness Day is available on National Energy Action’s website.

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Councils should use bonds to fund green infrastructure projects

28 February 2016The Independent reports on a further supporter for the use of Green Bonds to help fund green infrastructure.“Councils should use bonds to fund much needed green infrastructure projects such as renewable energy and flood defences, according to the Lord Mayor of London.” Two quick things to note here: first, the Lord Mayor of London is not the Mayor of London  – but Leader of the Corporation of the City of London (one of London’s 33 boroughs) – a one year post largely undertaking ceremonial and social duties. Secondly, The Independent is actually quoting a former Lord Mayor – Sir Roger Gifford was appointed that post in 2012-13. The latest incumbent can seen here.

The Independent continues: “Sir Roger Gifford said there was tremendous scope for the country to follow the lead of the US and Swede, where municipalities have raised billions of pounds for green projects by selling bonds to  the public. ..The city of Gothenburg launched its own green bond for a project and were flooded with calls from local people wanting to get involved,” said Sir Roger, an experienced financier who heads the UK division of Sweden’s SEB Bank, which managed the Gothenburg green bond. “I don’t see why that shouldn’t happen in Leeds, or Bradford, or wherever.” Gothenburg’s two green bonds have helped fund a number of projects across the city including water, biogas, district heating, and electric vehicle infrastructure.

“Sir Roger added: “There is great potential for the UK to follow the Scandinavian or North America models. Mostly obviously for wind, but also for wave, solar and biofuel power – all those forms of renewable energy are perfect for this kind of climate-friendly financing. Waste management, water management, better water grids, better electricity grids, sustainable transport, sustainable housing – all of them are also excellent, as is  air-pollution prevention. His comments came as Swindon became the first council in the UK to issue a solar bond, a renewable energy bond, or a bond of any type to the public for more than a century.”

Interestingly Sir Roger is also chairman of the recently launched Green Finance Initiative, launched on 16 January of this year “which aims to make London the world leader in green finance” – see full City of London press release here.

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New GLA DE support programme announced

February 2016:  The Greater London Authority (GLA) has asked me to post the following online: “a new opportunity for interested contractors to be part of a new framework on Decentralised Energy (DE). The Mayor of London has set a target to meet 25% of London’s energy supply from DE by 2025. The DE Capacity Study (GLA, 2011) confirmed this target as being achievable based on both renewable and low carbon energy sources and that it represented an £8 billion investment opportunity.

The development of DE projects through the various phases to market requires significant resource and a diverse set of skills, knowledge and expertise. These elements combined with the risk profile of the project development phase act as real barriers for both public and private sector organisations.

Since 2011 the GLA has been supporting others to identify and implement DE projects through various programmes. Energy for London will be delivered by the GLA and will procure and direct technical, commercial, financial and other advisory and support services to help others develop, procure and bring into operation larger-scale DE schemes that deliver significant CO2 reductions at market-competitive prices.

Please take a look at the Prior Information Notice, which has just been issued and is available here.” Hmm… – the GLA have decided to call this initiative Energy for London…

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More for a London energy company…

26 February 2016 …and yet another Mayoral candidate pledges to establish a London energy company

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Dawn Butler and Jeremy Corbyn launch #PrePayRipOff campaign

February 2016: The Kilburn Times reports that Brent Central MP,  Dawn Butler, and Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn (who is also the Islington North MP) have launched a campaign in the House of Commons to tackle the higher costs of using prepayment gas and electricity meters. The campaign was kick-started with the launch of a petition on behalf of more than 13,000 residents in Brent who use the prepayment method.

Following on from an Early Day Motion (EDM) on prepayment meters put forward by Dawn Butler, the Brent MP held a debate in the House of Commons on the 1st of December 2015 highlighting that her “constituency has one of the highest numbers of people on PPMs in the country—at 26%, it is 10% above the national average—and those on PPMs pay on average £226 more a year than those with the cheapest direct debit deals.” (full transcript here – youtube video here).

The Kilburn Times also reported that Mayoral candidate Sadiq Khan was at the campaign launch where he said “One in five households in London have no choice but to use prepayment meters to pay their bills. This could be costing the most disadvantaged families in the capital an additional £140 million a year. “I am calling on the energy companies to automatically give Londoners the best possible deal on their energy tariffs and ensure the most disadvantaged in our communities are given reduced standing rates.”

Another London politician supporting the campaign is East Ham MP Stephen Timms.

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London Energy Plan Scenarios and energy infrastructure map

23 February 2016: The GLA launched the first outputs from their forthcoming London Energy Plan (LEP) at an event held at the The Crystal. The purpose of the LEP is to support the development of the London Infrastructure Plan by evaluating  London’s future energy needs to 2050, as a result of a rapidly increasing population (approximately 100,000 people a year) and the predicted increase in energy demand as a result of this growth. Further background to the London Energy Plan can be seen on the following presentations here and here.

As part of this work, the GLA have built on previous work in establishing a London Heat Map, to develop the first spatial mapping of London’s energy demand, supply and infrastructure. The interactive map allows different scenarios for energy supply and demand across London in 2015, 2025 and 2050 to be explored (in that, it is similar to DECC’s 2050 Energy Calculator). The London Energy Plan map can be accessed here.

The London Energy Plan looks at four scenarios for the city’s energy infrastructure to 2050:
• High demand, centralised supply
• Mid demand, mixed supply
• Low demand, decentralised supply
• Low demand, centralised supply.

An accompanying Scenarios to 2050 narrative document (direct download here) provides the detail and context to the assumptions made across these scenarios. Two key messages that came out of the event was that for London to achieve its longer term energy and carbon goals, there was an urgent need to start planning and to act now. Additionally, the highest amount of effort in terms of energy and emissions reductions needed to be achieved over the next decade – something that an incoming Mayor in May 2016 will need to address.

Continue reading…

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