New report calls for London to become a National Park City and the creation of a London energy company to cut household bills and emissions.
A new report, 'London: Global Green City' written by think tank IPPR and supported by the Berkeley Group says London faces huge environmental challenges and tackling them should be one of the next Mayor's top priorities.
The new research found around 10% of households in London are classified as 'fuel poor' and London has some of the most energy inefficient housing in Europe. More than 215 hectares of green space was lost in London between 2009 and 2012, equivalent to Hyde Park and Battersea Park combined, and nearly 2 million Londoners live more than 1 kilometre from a green space. Air pollution in the capital is estimated to have shortened lives by 140,000 years in 2010, or the equivalent of more than 9,400 deaths.
Outlining how the next mayor can integrate the environment into all policy areas to make London a 'global green city', the new report recommends:
- Creating a new energy company - Energy for London - to reduce household fuel bills, tackle fuel poverty and cut emissions by boosting solar and other renewable energy and energy efficiency.
- Designating the capital as a 'National Park City' to promote the protection and enhancement of nature and green space.
- Creating a 'Clean Air Zone' by merging the current congestion charging and ultra-low emissions zones, ensuring the bus fleet meets air pollution standards by 2019 and expanding the electric vehicle charging network.
Laurie Laybourn-Langton, an IPPR research fellow, said:
"London needs to think of itself as a global green city, a place where all Londoners can enjoy green space with all the health and wellbeing benefits that flow from this. Our vision of the capital is one with a worldwide reputation as a city where the environment enhances quality of life for all.
"Our report provides a comprehensive programme to ensure the environment is integrated into all policy areas. This includes a call for the next Mayor of London to establish a new London energy company, as a way of cutting fuel bills and carbon emissions, and for the capital to be designated a national park city, as part of a raft of policies to protect and enhance London's natural environment. The green agenda is not an add-on: it should be one of the Mayor's top priorities."
Berkeley Group was the first housebuilder to launch a climate change policy in 2007 and was awarded the Queen's Award for Enterprise in Sustainable Development in 2008 and 2014. Read more about Berkeley's commitment to environmental sustainability.