London’s Mayor Boris Johnson has unveiled plans to make the city “the low-carbon capital of the world”.
At the top of a raft of measures introduced were the formation of a green technology fund backed with £100m from the London Development Agency, and a Green Enterprise Zone in east London with a £30m exhibition and conference centre built by Siemens at its heart.
Mr Johnson also said he would be creating 10 ‘low-carbon zones’, putting charging points for electric vehicles in all new supermarket car parks and fitting 3,000 LED traffic lights.
Mr Johnson used the opening of sustainability conference Base London last week to reveal his ambitions for a greener London. He said the capital was “the home of technological revolution” and the city had “the people and the brains” to deliver dramatic CO2 cuts. “Seventy-five percent of the world’s carbon trading desks are here in London,” he said. “It will be London technology and enterprise that will help sort out carbon emissions at home and abroad.
“A century ago, we were cashing in on carbon, yet now there are clear economic opportunities coming from getting rid of it. I want London to be ahead of the queue, grasping a significant share of the jobs and economic booty arising from this new generation of low carbon goods and services.”
The Green Enterprise District will cover the London boroughs of Hackney, Tower Hamlets, Newham, Waltham Forest, Barking and Dagenham and Havering. It hopes to attract companies in the low carbon and environmental goods and services sectors, with a particular focus on waste management, recovery and recycling, renewable energy such as biomass, wind and photovoltaic, and emerging low carbon technologies.
The Siemens Pavilion in the district will be built at the Royal Docks near the ExCeL centre and London City airport on land owned by the London Development Agency and Newham council.
Siemens wants it to be a permanent showcase for sustainable technologies and somewhere that can be visited by the public, customers and students to find out more about a low carbon society. It is due to be completed by 2012 when it will be the base for 230 Siemens staff.