The Mayor of London’s Draft Environment Strategy was published last week. This sets out an ambitious programme to make London a Zero Carbon city by 2050, and provides a focus on policy areas for the Mayor to address in the upcoming London Plan due to be published later this year. Here we examine the proposals with specific regard to district heating.
It seems clear the Mayor will have greater expectations for smaller new developments to connect to off-site networks, and equally for larger schemes to enable off-site connection.
With a stronger policy framework in place, supported by the necessary delivery mechanisms, going forward it will be more difficult for developers to pursue alternative energy strategies in London and to only consider their application in isolation.
District Heating Delivery
The document sets a clear ambition towards more large scale, decentralised and low energy projects, with better centralised planning.
The strategy considers the development of a District Heating Network Delivery Body as part of a partnership with Boroughs and developers. This would help to secure funding and oversee the development and construction of the networks with a view to the district heating network extending beyond the application site boundaries.
We look forward to further details about the District Heating Network delivery body in due course and will provide more details once the updated draft London Plan is published later this year.
Air Quality Considerations
The Mayor is considering a ban on Combined Heat and Power (CHP) in areas exceeding legal air quality limits, with a focus instead on ultra-low emission boilers.
We consider that appropriately designed and considered CHP systems can have very low emissions (below gas boilers) and so we do not consider this will impact on district heating delivery.