Mayor expands work making 1000s of buildings more energy efficient

29 August 2014

The Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, today announced a further investment of almost £12m to expand his programme to retrofit buildings across the capital, making them more energy efficient, reducing carbon emissions, creating hundreds of jobs and saving millions of pounds for London.


The new funds will extend London’s retrofit work, which since 2008 has updated more than 400,000 homes and over 350 public buildings including schools, hospitals, libraries and town halls, to more buildings across the capital.


Low carbon technologies including LED lighting, new boilers, insulation, and the installation of heat and power networks, solar panels, upgrading boilers, and double glazing, have already helped to save tens of thousands of tonnes of carbon a year, comparable to taking around 50,000 cars off London’s roads.


The Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, said: “We need to do everything possible to make the most of our resources, reduce carbon emissions and create a more secure, cost-effective and sustainable heat and power supply across London. Retrofitting older homes and buildings has a pivotal part to play in this, while also helping to save us all money on fuel bills. With these innovative energy saving technologies, London is leading the way as a 21st Century world city.”


Projects already underway with the Mayor’s support include:

• In Tooting, the Mayor is helping to transform St George’s, one of the UK’s largest teaching hospitals, with a £12million investment in measures that will reduce energy output by 39 per cent and cut over 6,000 tonnes of carbon emissions per annum - equivalent to removing over 3,000 cars from the road

• In Croydon, a £20million investment will help retrofit 30 civic buildings including schools and libraries

• In Hackney, a £7m project to create a communal gas heating network to replace expensive individual electric heating in more than 800 homes across 10 blocks of social housing, reducing energy bills by 56 per cent with average annual personal savings of £980 for over 1500 tenants

• The Lee Valley Heat Network, an ambitious project to provide low carbon heating in the form of hot water through a system of pipes to tens of thousands of homes across north London, reducing the carbon footprint of each home by around 50 per cent

• The installation of low-carbon heat and cooling systems across the Tate’s London estate – including, the Tate Modern, Tate Britain and its local storage facilities – to achieve a 25% annual energy saving and a 45% reduction in the Tate Modern’s gas consumption alone


Eric Munro, Joint Director of Estates & Facilities at St George’s Healthcare NHS Trust and St George’s University of London, said: “Both of the St George’s institutions are looking forward to enjoying the long term value for money and carbon reduction being delivered through the Mayor’s London Energy Efficiency Fund. In the current economic climate, it is vital that we maximise the resources that we are able to put into both patient care and student experience. We are also very conscious of our environmental footprint and this project will go a long way to reducing our carbon impact.”


Leo Bedford, Director of the Mayor’s London Energy Efficiency Fund (LEEF) at Amber, which has delivered £3.8m of annual savings since the end of 2011, said: “Delivering a diverse range of projects eighteen months ahead of schedule underlines LEEF’s key role investing in infrastructure which cuts energy costs and reduces carbon emissions, whilst delivering a return to our investors. The Mayor’s pledge of an additional £11.5 million demonstrates his commitment to energy efficiency investment and the appetite for LEEF’s type of funding. We are proud of our achievements to date and confident that LEEF will remain an integral part of this long-term initiative.” 

Notes to editors

The Mayor’s Retrofitting Programme consists of investment through the London Green Fund, and development support through the Mayor’s RE:FIT (for public buildings) and RE:NEW (for homes) schemes.

A further £11.5m (£10m from the European Regional Development Fund and £1.5m generated in interest) is being made available by the London Green Fund for retrofitting activities.

The London Green Fund has three components: (i) Foresight Environmental Fund (FEF), which supports waste infrastructure; (ii) LEEF, which invests in energy efficiency measures in public and private building, as well as decentralised energy schemes and (iii) the Green Social Housing Fund (GSHF), which invest in energy efficiency measures in social housing.

The new investment will go into LEEF.

Since its formation in September 2011, LEEF has invested capital in a diverse portfolio of projects concentrated on the installation of technologies that help reduce carbon emissions and improve energy performance.

Based on sponsors’ figures, the projects will collectively create over 900 jobs and mobilise £250m of finance in the capital, whilst providing annual reductions of 16,000 tonnes of carbon and £3.8m in energy costs – equivalent to heating 1,500 homes and removing 800 cars from the roads.

The ‘Lee Valley Heat Network’ is in its first phase which will focus on Enfield Council’s flagship £1.5 billion Meridian Water development. North London Waste Authority’s Energy-from-Waste facility at the nearby Edmonton EcoPark has the capacity to supply low carbon heat to 5,000 new homes at Meridian Water and businesses in the Lee Valley.

A further 1,800 homes on the Ladderswood, Alma and New Avenue estates could also benefit subject to final funding package.


The Mayor of London's award-winning RE:FIT programme is providing the public sector substantial financial cost savings, by reducing energy consumption of their buildings and reducing their CO2 footprint.

More than 350 buildings have been retrofitted, saving around 30,000 tonnes of carbon a year, and saving the public sector over £5million a year. This is the equivalent to taking over 27,000 cars off the roads of London*.

This investment of over £54million is creating over 1,200 jobs in the industry.**

* Based on the average emissions for a London car 1.1 tonnes per year using the average distance of 6,500km. Carbon savings 30,412 divided by the average emission per car, equals 27,522 cars off the road (per year) using 6,500km per year.

** Based on research published by the Energy Efficiency Industrial Forum titled "How Many Jobs? A Survey of the Employment Effects of Investment in Energy Efficiency of Buildings", dated May 2012. €1 million in upgrading the energy efficiency of our building stock will create 19.3 new direct jobs Converting into British pounds, £824,839 represents €1 million (using exchange rate of 1€ = £0.824839) per 19.3 jobs, equating to £42,737.77 per job.


stablished in 2009, RE:NEW has delivered improvements to over 100,000 homes and saved over 22,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide per annum.

Combined with wider retrofit action, London has seen over 400,000 homes retrofitted.

Earlier this month the GLA RE:NEW Programme was awarded €3,016,440 (£2,513,700) from the European Investment Bank (EIB) ELENA facility under the CIP-Intelligent Energy Europe Programme.

This is being matched by a 10 per cent contribution by the GLA of €335,160 (£279,300), taking the funding for the three year support team to €3,351,600 (£2,793,000)

The funding will provide a three year RE:NEW Support Team to support social housing providers, private landlords and owner occupier schemes to help them to increase the scale and speed of contracting for carbon reducing retrofit across London.

The team will provide a free programme development service including scoping, business case development, technical, funding and procurement support. Capita were awarded a £2.8 million contract to provide the support service until July 2017.