london mayor pushes wind power

  1. 513 Posts.
    Another positive article on wind power in the UK. Syringe, please don't read anything into this story! I'm just posting it for people who are interested in power generation.
    Livingstone has plans for a windy city
    Jonathan Leake, Environment Editor

    LONDON could become a city of wind turbines and solar- powered buildings under a plan drawn up by Ken Livingstone, the mayor, to make it the world’s “greenest” capital.

    Under the plan, the lower reaches of the Thames would be lined with wind farms, with more turbines to be situated across the city on sites such as the roofs of tall buildings, homes and offices.

    Many buildings could also be fitted with solar panels and other features aimed at generating and conserving energy. Livingstone hopes one day to disconnect the capital from the national grid and make it self-sufficient in electricity.

    The grid would be progressively replaced by a network of small power stations fuelled by natural gas and organic waste as well as wind and solar energy.

    Livingstone will implement the strategy through the Climate Change Agency for London, which he will launch this spring. He has already told London assembly members of his plan but only hinted at how far he wants to go.

    He said: “London uses more energy than the whole of Ireland and about the same amount as Greece or Portugal. By 2050 summers will be up to 3.5C hotter and in central London the urban heat island effect could mean the increase is even greater.”

    Among the most controversial aspects of Livingstone’s plan is his proposal for transport. He plans to make greater London a “low emission zone” by 2007. That would mean banning lorries, coaches, buses and taxis from the streets unless they met tough pollution standards. The ruling could hit hundreds of thousands of commercial vehicles.

    Livingstone’s proposals will be welcomed by environmentalists as long overdue. They also fit into the strategy of the government, which has set out ambitious targets to cut emissions by 60% by 2050.

    Others fear that if Livingstone moves too fast he will provoke a revolt by voters fed up with surging transport and energy costs.

    The changes will be masterminded by Allan Jones, who was recruited by Livingstone last year to run the Climate Change Agency. Jones had been working at Woking, in Surrey, now seen as Britain’s greenest local authority, where he removed public buildings from the national grid, replacing it with local power stations that provide hot water for heating as well as generating electricity.

    He also oversaw installation of solar panels on many public buildings. Woking council now saves about £1m a year on energy bills.

    Jones has been working with Livingstone’s officials to finalise plans for a similar transformation of London. One Livingstone aide said: “Ken has gone into legacy mode. Transforming London into one of the world’s greenest cities is how he wants to be remembered.”

    The agency would also promote energy efficiency in buildings. This could include solar panels and extra insulation or building wind turbines on roofs or open land. Another idea is to build wind farms along the river for the proposed Thames Gateway development east of Greenwich.
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