Tag Archives: Croydon

Getting into Hot Water…

March 2013: Presentation made at the the recent Combined Heat and Power Association (CHPA) district heating conference, by Bob Fiddik, Sustainable Development & Energy Team Leader at Croydon Council, giving some valuable insights into the challenges faced when developing heat networks. The presentation includes:

  • Some of the history behind the failure of the SELCHP energy from waste plant to develop the expected district heat network anticipated when it was built – and the recent work now being undertaken to help turn this around
  • The unhappy circumstances that led to the stalling of the hugely exciting Elephant & Castle heat network project, and
  • An update to the major district heating scheme currently being planned for Croydon.

Slide 14 of the presentation sets out – as challenging as circumstances have been in the past – things are not unfortunately getting easier:

Download ‘Getting into hot water…not always that easy’ here.

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DE plans for Croydon Town Centre

February 2013: Following a consultation last Summer, a Croydon Town Centre Opportunity Area Planning Framework (OAPF) has just been adopted by the Mayor,  Croydon Council and TfL. OAPFs  set out planning, regeneration and design guidance for major growth centres in London, called Opportunity Areas. The London Plan identifies 33 Opportunity Areas one of which is the Croydon Metropolitan Centre and its environs.

Included within the  OAPF are considerations of future energy requirements within the area. Chapter 4 of the document sets out the following:

“4.68 Delivery of a Croydon Central Area Heat and Power Scheme is an objective of the Croydon Council climate change strategy. In order to achieve a major reduction in the Borough’s carbon footprint, and meet the Mayor’s decentralised energy target, the Core Strategy (Policy CS6) expects that larger  developments and refurbishments should be enabled to connect to district energy networks based on centralised combined heat and power plants (CHP), particularly in the COA and other district centres within the borough.

4.69 Croydon Council has undertaken a detailed study on the viability of delivering a district heating network to support the regeneration of the COA. The scheme would provide low carbon heat to new developments which would enable them to meet the energy performance standards required by planning policy and national Building Regulations. Existing buildings would also be able to connect to the scheme to benefit from the lower carbon heat. Some key features are:

• A centralised “energy centre” fuelled by gas fired Combined Heat & Power plant

• This heat is distributed across the COA as hotwater in a network of buried pipes

• The electricity generated could be sold for use in near by buildings with the excess being exported to the public supply grid

• The scheme would be financed, designed, builtand operated by a commercial partner

• Cost of connecting to the scheme would be lower than making on-site heat provision

• Cost of heat to building users will be less than alternative on-site provision of heat (e.g. having own boiler system and paying for heat)

• Wandle Road car park has been identified asa potential location for the energy centre butfurther feasibility work is required to assess thisoption in more detail

4.70 It is envisaged that the first phase of the scheme would connect to new developments in mid Croydon and East Croydon, along with a core of existing public buildings. The full potential would expand to buildings across the wider COA area. The council will be working with the GLA “Decentralised Energy Project Delivery Unit” to configure the scheme so that it would be commercially attractive to the energy services market. This work is currently ongoing. As and when new development comes forward it will be expected to help deliver and connect into such a district heating system, if feasible.”

Other OAPF energy studies undertaken include Vauxhall Nine Elms Battersea, London Riverside and White City amongst others.

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Waltham Forest continues to lead on PV

January 2013: DECC have released their latest quarterly dataset of “Sub-regional statistics show [ing] the number of installations and total installed capacity by technology type at the end the latest quarter that have been confirmed on the Central FIT Register (CFR)”. [DECC weblink;  Excel file] The data provides a useful breakdown of installations under the Feed in Tariff (FIT) programme by ‘local authorities’ and also ‘parliamentary constituency’. The top 10  London boroughs by total installs of PV (photovoltaic) installations under the FITs programme (which started in April 2010) is provided below.

Waltham Forest 861
Bromley 730
Croydon 577
Havering 491
Bexley 404
Richmond upon Thames 397
Barnet 394
Ealing 383
Redbridge 336
Lewisham 315

Points to note:

  • Waltham Forest continues to be the local authority with the most number of total PV installs
  • By comparing the latest dataset to the previous October 2012 dataset, it can also be seen that Waltham Forest had the highest number of PV installs over the past quarter (136) – 3-4 times as much as the next nearest boroughs (Bromley (49), Croydon (33) and Havering (32)
  • Over the last three quarters London has seen a small drop in its percentage of total PV installs as a proportion of the UK total – from 2.79% to 2.76%
  • Further comparison of PVs in London compared to other UK regions can be seen here.
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The Energy Bill misses out “opportunity to support community energy co-operatives”

January 2013: Newly elected Labour MP for Croydon North, Steve Reed, made a welcome intervention in the December parliamentary debate on the Energy Bill correctly stating that the Bill “misses an opportunity to support community energy co-operatives”. As an example of what can be achieved by such schemes, Mr Reed gave details of the  Brixton Energy project:

“Brixton solar energy 1 was the country’s first urban energy generation co-operative and was set up by the local community in Brixton, working in co-operation with the local authority, Lambeth council…Brixton solar 1 was built on the roof of a social housing estate, Loughborough Park in Brixton. Brixton solar 2 is being built on another part of the same estate and a third scheme is planned for another estate in the area. The schemes are funded by community subscription and offer a 3% return to investors, most of whom are local. They are part-resourced by the local authority, which makes the buildings available.

Instead of supporting such schemes, the Bill offers smaller community generators lower market prices for their power, making them less financially viable, and it fails to recognise the administration costs needed to run them. The Bill also ends the renewables obligation, which means that suppliers have no incentive to purchase from independent generators such as Brixton solar energy.

Mr Reed should be familiar with the scheme as, until his appointment to Parliament, he was the Leader of Lambeth Council. He goes on to conclude with some really good recommendations:

“The Bill should be amended to increase the fixed feed-in tariff threshold for community projects, guarantee a market for community energy schemes and set a minimum annual target for new generation capacity from community schemes. I should like to see local authorities incentivised to lower overall household carbon emissions in their area, which they could do in part by supporting projects such as Brixton solar energy.”

Further detail on these can be found in some excellent research by Cornwall Energy undertaken for Co-operatives UK and published a few months ago.

It should be noted that Scotland has had a target since 2011 of 500 MW community and locally-owned renewable energy by 2020 (see here for details).

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25 heat network projects being supported in London

November 2012: A recent speech by Ed Davey, Secretary of State at DECC on the department’s emerging policy around heat energy highlighted how the efficient use of heat is being promoted in the capital through its promotion of district heating. Mr Davey stated:

“London contains an example of the potential. The Greater London Authority is supporting 25 heat network projects. These have the capacity to leverage over £230 million of investment.”

A recent Mayoral question provides a little more detail on where these schemes are:

“The Decentralised Energy Project Delivery Unit is currently supporting the development of 25 decentralised projects. The following lists the activities with the boroughs:
Projects at procurement: Brent and Camden;
• Projects at post-feasibility: Croydon, Enfield, Haringey, Waltham Forest and Westminster;
• Projects at feasibility: Southwark, Islington, Hammersmith and Fulham, Newham, Sutton;
• Projects at pre-feasibility/energy master planning: Hillingdon, Ealing, and Westminster.”

Further information on Brent’s South Kilburn DE project can be found here.
Details of the innovative scheme being supported by Camden in Gospel Oak can be found here (and recent October newsletter here), which is using heat from a Combined Heat and Power (CHP) plant situated in the Royal Free Hospital, to provide low carbon affordable heat to nearby residents.
Other information can be found in the various borough heat map reports posted on www.londonheatmap.org.uk

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Waltham Forest has highest number of PV installations of any London borough

24 October 2012: A recent post provided some regional detail of the uptake of Feed in Tariff (FITs) generators – predominantly photovoltaics (PVs) – across the UK (at the English regions and devolved administrations level). DECC have today released an updated spreadsheet providing a breakdown on the number of installations at local authority and parliamentary constituency level. This highlights that:

  • London’s suburbs do the best in relation to PVs installed with Waltham Forest  having the highest number of installs of all London boroughs (701); then Bromley (666), Croydon (525)  and Havering (440).
  • The parliamentary constituency of Walthamstow has accordingly the highest number of PV installations of any constituency in London (373). [For context, Tiverton in Devon has the highest number of installations of any UK constituency – 2,456]
  • Unfortunately installed capacity (ie kWe of generation) by local authority/constituency is not available – which would be a more helpful metric (it is included available on a per installation basis in Ofgem’s comprehensive FIT spreadsheet (370k+ entries) – the latest of which was published a few weeks ago – and which Energy for London is currently going through and will report on shortly).
  • A not very helpful map is also provided by DECC today of Number of domestic photovoltaic installations by Local Authority, as at end of September 2012

In addition to the direct link here the spreadsheet can also be downloaded from the following DECC FITs webpage (the file is called ‘Sub-regional Feed-in Tariffs confirmed on the CFR statistics‘).

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Heat and the City – Financing District Heating

June 2012: A one-day workshop was held at the Building Centre in London earlier this year – organised by the ‘Heat and City’ initiative –  bringing together leading municipal energy practitioners (including 21 local authorities and a housing association), UK and Scottish Governments, and a range of commercial industry representatives to discuss strategies for financing district heating initiatives.

Amongst the presentations made at the conference – which are now available download – a number were made in relation to projects going ahead in London including:

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Croydon Zero Carbon Homes research

April 2012: Tenants in Croydon are to take part in a research project, being undertaken by Sheffield Hallam University, to show how residents are responding to new zero carbon energy alternatives such as renewable house-based energy, high insulation and air proofing, and district heating and biomass fuel. The research will also will also quiz landlords and housing associations to provide a full picture of how the UK’s housing market is facing up to the challenge of zero carbon homes by 2016.  Read further details here.

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Community Consultation on proposed energy from waste plant

6 March 2012: The Croydon Guardian reports that: “The company that wants to build a major incinerator in Beddington has announced its programme of community consultation on its plans.
Waste company Viridor has revealed details of the facility on its landfill and waste management site in Beddington Lane, which will create energy from burning 275,000 tonnes of waste each year.
The £200m project, which will handle not only waste from Sutton, Croydon, Kingston, and Merton, but also large amounts of business waste.
By burning non-recyclable waste to create steam to power turbines, the incinerator is expected to produce about 30 megawatts of electricity and heat energy, estimated to be enough to power 30,000 homes.” Read the full story here. Previous Croydon Guardian stories can be seen here and here and here.

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The Green Deal in London: Borough Challenges

February 2012: Future of London are holding a series of events on the challenges boroughs face in implementing the Green Deal and ECO in London. The first of these “focused on how London Boroughs can be “Green Deal Friendly” and drive demand for the mechanism in their area.” Presentations from the session from local authority representatives from Croydon, Merton and others are available to view as well as a summary of the workshop – Borough Challenges Briefing Paper.

The session was well attended  by 12 London boroughs and makes interesting reading. Included amongst the comments:

1) Participants from across the majority of participant Boroughs were concerned about the feasibility of the Green Deal – particularly relating to levels of local demand and the costs of implementing retro-fit programmes in London

1) General doubts over feasibility of the Green Deal
a) Several doubts were expressed from a number of different sources about whether Green Deal will work under current arrangements
b) In particular, concerns were raised about levels of demand locally for the Green Deal, the impact this could have on the Golden Rule, and the particular costs associated with delivering energy efficiency in London.
c) One borough noted a free eco-refurbishment scheme had only been successfully completed on one property
d) It was felt that further incentives are likely to be required to boost participation.

d) At the moment there is a reluctance amongst the majority of Boroughs represented at this seminar to act as Green Deal providers – there is too much uncertainty surrounding the mechanism
e) There is a risk that Boroughs who don’t take on a meaningful role in the delivery of Green Deal will disengage from the Green Deal altogether, because they have less stake in its success

The Green Deal and Energy Company Obligation (ECO) consultation finished a few weeks ago and  Government are now considering the 600+ responses. Further updates on the Green Deal are available here.

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‘Croydon Council approve plan which would allow for the planned incinerator’

2  February 2012: The Croydon Guardian reports that “Croydon Council approve plan which would allow for the planned incinerator.” Read full story here. Earlier Croydon Guardian coverage here, here and here.

Further information on this scheme also available on an earlier post.

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Proposed Croydon Energy from Waste plant

November 2011: The Croydon Guardian reports that “Viridor is being presented by the South London Waste Partnership (SLWP), as its preferred bidder for a controversial new waste management plant for Croydon, Merton, Kingston and Sutton…The facility could produce enough energy to power thousands of homes, processing more than 200,000 tonnes of waste a year from the four boroughs.”
Further information on Council’s discussions around the plant can be found here.
Details of the SLWP’s activities can be found here.

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