Tag Archives: Lambeth

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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South Bank Decentralised Energy Scheme Proposed

14 December 2012: There were several news reports this week (here, here and here) that plans have been released to redevelop the area around the Shell Centre on the South Bank which include mention of an onsite ‘energy centre’.

The developer’s press release goes on to say that “The system will be designed to interconnect with a district heating network being explored for the wider South Bank area.” This is referring to a study undertaken in 2009 looking at the potential for an area-wide decentralised energy heat network connecting new and existing buildings along the South Bank, which was undertaken by London South Bank University for the South Bank Employers’ Group (SBEG).

The planning application is to be submitted to Lambeth  before Christmas. Some additional information on the South Bank Master Plan is posted here and on the Shell Centre Dialogue here.

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Vauxhall Nine Elms Battersea Energy Strategy

April 2012: A planning framework for the Vauxhall / Nine Elms / Battersea Opportunity Area has  been finalised and is being adopted as  Supplementary Planning Guidance to the London Plan. The OAPF  has been produced by the GLA in collaboration with Lambeth and Wandsworth councils, as well as TfL and English Heritage and followed a public consultation process that took place in the winter of 2009/10.
The framework sets out an ambition for around 16,000 new homes and a range of 20,000 – 25,0000 jobs and includes the creation of a Combined Cooling and Heat Power network. The technical appendices to the planning framework includes a Energy Strategy Masterplan (TA5) which states that “this report finds that the density and diversity of development in the Vauxhall Nine Elms Battersea (VNEB) Opportunity Area (OA) supports a strong case for the development of a low carbon district heating network (DHN). The scheme would supply low carbon heat to developments in the heart of Nine Elms, Battersea Power Station (BPS) and the New Covent Garden Market (NCGM) initially, with the potential to expand north into Albert Embankment and to the more industrial areas of the OA to the west in the future. It is estimated that such a scheme could save in the order of 18,000 tonnes CO2 per annum, with heat being derived from a combination of low/zero carbon sources,including combined heat and power (CHP) plant burning a blend of natural and renewable biogas and heat from a biomass hot water boiler.” Further detail and download energy appendix here.

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Update on Brixton Solar Project

1 March 2012: BusinessGreen have provided a short update on Brixton’s Repowering South London solar scheme, stating that the project has “raised £10,000 from investors towards a £75,000 target since launching a share offering earlier this month.” The full article can be read here.

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Brixton Energy share offer

February 2012:  An exciting initiative for London – community group Repowering South London, has announced a share offer for its first project: Brixton Energy Solar 1. The project will look to install several hundred square metres of solar panels on the roofs of the Loughborough Estate in Brixton.

Funding is to be provided by a £75,000 community share offer, providing a return to investors of up to 3% p.a. Part of the income generated will be reinvested in energy-saving improvements in the local area such as insulation and education on energy efficiency.

The share offer form can be downloaded here. Keep uptodate on news from Brixton Energy by signing up to their Twitter feed.

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Lessons from the Community Sustainable Energy Programme (CSEP)

February 2012: BRE are holding a series of events on ‘Lessons from the Community Sustainable Energy Programme (CSEP)’ – not to be confused with CESP!

CSEP provided Big Lottery Funding for community-based energy efficiency and renewable projects (NOTE: the programme closed in 2010 – however very recently a new funding round has opened with a deadline for applications of 29 February 2012).

No specific London workshop took place, however, a session earlier this month at BRE’s HQ includes a detailed (8MB) presentation on CSEP, and also a case study presentation on the Brixton Solar project. Download both here.

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London LEAF Winners

7 February 2012: DECC yesterday announced on their Community Energy Online website that 155 community energy projects across the country have won a share of £5.1 million of funding from the Local Energy Assessment Fund (LEAF). The full list of Local Energy Assessment Fund (2nd Round) projects can be downloaded here. Only scant details of the winning projects are provided in the list however  zooming on London in DECC’s ‘interactive map showing winning community projects‘ provides further information on the 14 winning projects in London. A summary of this information follows below:

  • South Kenton Preston Park Residents Association who will run
    a local home energy assessment of the energy consumption in
    the area. Further information www.skppra.co.uk
  • Community Education Forum who will deliver a community-led energy
    saving programme aimed at the Bangladeshi, Somali and African and African Caribbean communities around Hammersmith and Fulham. Further information www.cefuk.co.uk
  • Sustainable Merton will train community members to carry out
    a community energy efficiency survey and train local champions already engaged in energy reduction to work on implementation. Further information at: www.sustainablemerton.org
  • EcoLocal based in Merton will work to create a mobile home energy
    efficiency demonstration with models of wall insulation, and many other home energy saving devices, to go to engagement events as means of communicating the Green Deal to householders. Further information at: www.thecei.org.uk
  • Zero Carbon Hackbridge in Sutton will set up an energy saving network with local community groups. Volunteers will be trained to enable them to spread the word about energy saving to their friends and neighbours and offer free appointments with an Energy Doctor. Further information here.
  • Hyde Farm Climate Action Network near Tooting will conduct a feasibility study for retrofit community heating and CHP into the neighbourhood. Further information at: here.
  • Brixton Energy Co-op will develop the Brixton Energy Solar 1, a flagship community investment project in the Loughborough Estate in Brixton, deploying an 80kw photovoltaic array on the roofs of the estate. They will also conduct feasibility studies, engage with the community and lay the groundwork for the further renewable energy cooperatives across South London. Further information at: www.transitiontownbrixton.org
  • Transition Peckham’s,Repair, Re-build, Renew, will deliver solid wall demonstration projects to five households, targeting those at risk of being in fuel poverty. Further information at here
  • Shrinking the Footprint is the Church of England’s national environment campaign. They will run the project in three Dioceses around Southwark where no work has yet been done using the sMeasure and iMeasure on-line energy management software tools developed at the University of Oxford. Further information at: www.shrinkingthefootprint.org
  • Waterloo Community Development Group will develop a youth-led programme to empower trained home energy assessors to lead on efficiency and sustainable retrofit, including the Green Deal and ECO, through an awareness and engagement programme in Waterloo. Further information at: www.wcdg.org.uk
  • Camden and Westminster Refugee Training Partnership (CandWRTP) will work with refugees, asylum seekers, BME individuals especially women and organisations to identify and collect data on current energy saving measures and behaviour through a survey and a public consultation event. Further information at: here.
  • Local Space Housing (LSH), based in Islington, will aim to develop a 2 year tenant-led energy efficiency strategy for the association.
  • The Sustainable Home Survey Company C.I.C. aims to create three Green Deal Ready community groups Further information here.
  • The London Borough of Tower Hamlets will work on resident engagement and discuss setting up an Energy Co-Op. This will lead on to a feasibility survey for such a Energy Co-Op and creation of a working group to take it forward.
  • Poplar HARCA and Tower Hamlets manage c.10,000 homes in Poplar. They will purchase home energy management systems to link energy data for analysis.  Further information: www.poplarharca.co.uk
  • St. John on Bethnal Green will undertake energy surveys here and in other local faith buildings as well as domestic properties and prepare a report on findings. Further information at: www.faithintowerhamlets.com
  • Hackney Co-operative Developments CIC will provide external wall and roof insulation to a large managed workspace building used by charities, social enterprises, co-operatives, cultural entrepreneurs and locally-owned start-ups. Further information at: www.hced.co.uk
  • The Arcola Theatre Dalston Energy Angels project will work in Hackney to create a network of members with different needs, skills and offers who can support each other to create and service demand in for energy efficiency and renewable energy. They will use the Theatre to educate people about electricity consumption and create a Waste Wood Heating Network to run a wood-fired boiler. Further information here.
  • The HEET Project works with older and vulnerable people across the
    borough of Waltham Forest in north east London. They research, develop and pilot innovative ways to achieve higher energy savings for fuel poor households. Further information at: www.theheetproject.org.uk
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Evaluating RE:CONNECT

February 2012: Paper presented at the most recent GLA Investment and Performance Board evaluating the progress of the Mayor’s RE:CONNECT programme which established 10 ‘Low Carbon Zones’ across London.

The ten zones are in: Barking Town Centre (LBBD), Muswell Hill (Haringey),Archway (Islington), Brixton (Lambeth), Lewisham Town Centre (Lewisham), WandleValley (Merton), Ham & Petersham (Richmond), Peckham (Southwark), Hackbridge(Sutton), Queens Park (Westminster). The largest zone is in Archway with around 3,000 buildings; the smallest is in Hackbridge with around 300 buildings.

The programme is essentially a series of local scale demonstration projects that seek to deliver a 20% CO2 saving across the buildingsin a neighbourhood over a three year period (September 2009 – September 2012) and to provide an understanding of the factors that are required to deliver high coverage of energy efficiency measures and more efficient energy usage at a local scale.

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Energy Efficient Breakfast Events

January 2012: The Carbon Trust is hosting an Energy Efficient Breakfast for local businesses in the London Boroughs of  Camden, Westminster, Southwark and Lambeth, in partnership with Camden Council on 27 March 2012. Registration and breakfast will open at 7:30 am, the session will start at 8 am, and will finish at 10:00 am with an optional carbon surgery with the trainer for half an hour afterwards. Further details on  the content of the event and how to register posted on the Carbon Trust’s website.

A further event in Sutton is also being held on 6 March 2012.

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Five London Community Energy projects awarded Government funding

16 January 2012: DECC today announced the first 82 local energy projects to win funding from the new £10m Local Energy Assessment Fund (LEAF).  Five projects in London were selected:

Congratulations all!

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Hospital Heat and Power at Guy’s and St. Thomas’

September 2011: Guy’s and St. Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust have hosted a tour of their two Combined Heat and Power (CHP) plants which have, since their commissioning in 2009,  helped the Trust reduce CO2 emissions at the hospitals by a total of almost 11,300 tons per year and save more than £1.5 million in energy costs annually. Further information is detailed on the following news release.

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London schemes through to the next round of ‘energyshare’

12 August 2011: British Gas and River Cottage’s energyshare initiative have today announced the ‘longlist’ of 100 community renewable energy projects bidding for support from the initial £500,000 energyshare fund. Only seven London schemes are in this list of 100 projects and links to their project descriptions can be found below:

Ham Hydro – the installation of hydro power turbines on the River Thames at Teddington Weir
PETRA – green refurbishment of tower blocks to best practice standards of energy and water efficiency and generate renewable energy
SPACE_Solar – the installation of a large solar array on a new artist studio building in Peckham
All Souls Solar – installation of a solar array on All Souls Church in St Margarets, Isleworth
Glyndon Community – a scheme to make part of Plumstead-based Glyndon community centre’s energy consumpution come from renewable sources
Hackney City Farm
Hyde Farm Climate Action Network – Supporting ongoing energy saving projects on the Hyde Farm estate in Balham.

Further funding of £2m will be supplied for future bidding rounds by British Gas – much more information on energyshare can be found on their website.

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