Transport for London
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Transport for London to push ahead with green heating and energy efficiency in head offices and depots

Transport for London will install solar panels, LED lighting and heat pumps, which will reduce reliance on gas powered heating.

  • These upgrades were made possible by the Public Sector Decarbonisation Scheme, which is funded by Department of Energy Security and Net Zero and administered by teams at Salix
  • Transport for London is continuing to work to reduce carbon emissions and reliance of fossil fuels across its estate

Transport for London (TfL) has been awarded two grants totalling more than £16m from the Public Sector Decarbonisation Scheme (PSDS), which is delivered by Salix on behalf of the Department of Energy Security and Net Zero. A grant worth £14m will be used to reduce carbon emissions at six sites on TfL's London-wide estate. The second grant, worth more than £2m, will be used for carbon reducing measures at two London Underground depots. The successful grant applications were supported by the Mayor's Retrofit Accelerator for Workplaces programme.

This welcome new substantial funding will be used to bring in carbon reducing infrastructure such as heat pumps, solar panels, LED lighting, improved glazing and wall insulation. Six head office buildings across TfL's estate are due to be improved. This work will allow TfL to move away from reliance on fossil fuels that produce harmful carbon emissions and help get closer to achieving TfL and the Mayor's goal of making London a net zero city by 2030.

Currently gas use at Palestra, TfL's head office in Southwark, represents 45 per cent of all TfL head office gas use and 22 per cent of TfL's office carbon emissions, however once the work funded by the grant is completed, both will be reduced to zero. TfL forecasts that the Salix grant will bring about a reduction of emissions by 1,732 tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent (tCO2e) a year.

TfL has also been awarded £2.3m of grant funding to decarbonise buildings at both Neasden Depot and Finchley Central Signals Depot for London Underground. These projects will target the replacement of ageing fossil fuelled heating systems with low carbon alternatives as well as improving building performance through implementation of fabric measures. Upon completion, these buildings will be better insulated, more comfortable places to work, with modern, low carbon systems such as heat pumps, LED lighting and solar panels. It is anticipated this project will reduce emissions by 300 tCO2e a year.

Last year, the PSDS awarded £592,000 to TfL for work to make the London Trams depot at Therapia Lane TfL's first of a number of low carbon depots- making it cleaner, greener and cheaper to run.

The Therapia Lane project will upgrade heating systems with a mixture of efficient heat pumps and infrared panel heaters that will replace inefficient fossil fuel gas boilers. The additional electricity consumption from the new heating system is planned to be offset by using 1,800m2 of south-facing roof space for solar panels, as well as other energy efficiency measures such as improved insulation and LED lighting. This new heating and power system is forecast to reduce carbon emissions by 148 tCO2e a year.

Lilli Matson, TfL's Chief Safety, Health and Environment Officer, yesterday said:

"We are very pleased to have received this grant from Government, which will help us go faster in our plans to decarbonise our estate. By bringing forward plans to get us closer to the Mayor's 2030 net zero target, we are getting ever closer to our vision of being a strong, green heartbeat for London.

"As London's main public transport provider, we have a vital role to play, making our organisation and network ready to respond to the climate emergency and taking action to reduce harmful pollution in our city. We are committed to helping London thrive and become a sustainable city."

Salix Director of Programme, Ian Rodger yesterday said:

"We must move faster if we are to address the challenges around net zero. This is why we are looking forward to working with TfL on delivering their Public Sector Decarbonisation Scheme projects.

"At Salix we are committed to addressing climate change and cannot wait to work alongside TfL with these projects which will have a big impact on their carbon emissions."

As London's largest landowner and user of electricity, TfL is already using a varied range of resources to reduce its carbon impact and improve green ways of working, including seeking ways to remove fossil fuels across its building estate. TfL is also developing wider projects to improve energy efficiency and identify opportunities to generate renewable energy across its estate. Work to procure Power Purchase Agreements as part of its wider ambition to use 100 per cent renewable source electricity across TfL's operations by 2030 is ongoing.

Katherine Etheridge, ICE Regional Director London, South East and East of England, yesterday said:

"Decarbonising infrastructure systems, like transport, are an essential part of meeting the UK's net zero target. The Institution of Civil Engineers sees decarbonisation as not just a technical challenge or environmental issue for civil and infrastructure engineers, but as intrinsic to the thinking behind, design of, and execution of projects. It's great to see a leading organisation like Transport for London prioritising decarbonising its estate, and we look forward to seeing the impact of this, and similar, work." 

The TfL Corporate Environment Plan, launched in 2021, explains how TfL will help make London a carbon neutral city by 2030 and achieve the environmental outcomes of the Mayor's Transport Strategy. TfL is delivering measures to clean London's toxic air such as the London-wide Ultra Low Emission Zone, the growing numbers of greener buses and zero emission capable taxis.

TfL's wholly owned property company, Places for London, is committed to being a responsible and sustainable landlord and as part of this, launched an updated standard lease for businesses across its retail and arches estate earlier this year, so that there is now a stronger focus on environmental performance. It has a programme to roll out meters across the estate, so that energy use can be more easily monitored. By better monitoring energy use, businesses can - working together with Places for London - support the wider goal to reach net-zero carbon in London, as well as ensure they can better manage energy costs.

Businesses will be asked to share energy data with Places for London at regular intervals, so a better understanding of the environmental performance of its estate can be reached and assets can be future-proofed effectively. Places for London will also share the environmental performance data it holds with its tenants and will look to provide useful tips and advice to support them in becoming more sustainable. The updated lease will also see tenants commit to not making any changes or additions to their property that will lead to a lower Energy Performance Certificate Rating.

Notes to Editor

  • ​​​​The six head office sites to be improved through this funding are:
  • Palestra
  • Buckingham Palace Road complex (above Victoria Coach Station)
  • 210-216 Baker Street
  • Aldgate BTP
  • Victoria Station House
  • 15-17 Allsop Place
  • TfL's Corporate Environment Plan is here:
  • TfL's Green Infrastructure and Biodiversity Plan is here:
  • TfL has published the measures it is taking to support the Mayor's Net Zero 2030 target, including measures financed directly by the Mayor and those where further funding is needed:
  • TfL recently published its Green Infrastructure and Biodiversity Plan which lays out how TfL is seeking to continue improving the vast green spaces in and around the transport network to keep making London a green city for all
  • Across London, TfL is also converting lighting within stations, bus shelters and on trains to LED lighting, which uses up to 60 per cent less energy than traditional lighting while providing around 10 per cent brighter light. Currently, more than a third of Tube stations across London have been converted to LED lighting, and TfL expects to have all bus shelters, including those used in advertising panels, converted to LED lighting in the coming months
  • TfL has signed up to the Better Buildings Partnership's climate change commitment, enabling work with its peers in the property industry, to improve their buildings and their energy supplies while being transparent on the progress made
  • The Better Buildings Partnership Climate Commitment can be found here: Places for London's Better Buildings Partnership roadmap has been updated to show estimated emissions, what Places for London wants to achieve and the initial steps they will take on that pathway
  • Following a successful one-floor trial in 2019 at TfL's Endeavour Square offices in Stratford, TfL is working with smart tech provider LightFi to improve controls of the ventilation systems on all floors at Endeavour Square and at Pier Walk, North Greenwich. The innovative work will see sensors installed that pick up on Wi-Fi signals and assess how many people are on each floor, leading to ventilation where people actually are rather than generally ventilating the whole building during normal hours. This work is already saving £200,000 in electricity, cooling and heating costs at the east London site and is expected to bring similar savings when rolled out at Pier Walk
  • cooling and heating costs at the east London site and is expected to bring similar savings when rolled out at Pier Walk

About Salix:

Salix's role is to support the UK government in driving the transition to a low carbon future and meet challenging net zero targets. Salix delivers and administers grant and loan funding on behalf of the Department for Energy Security and Net Zero, the Department for Education and the Scottish and Welsh governments. This is delivered across the public sector as well as housing.

The schemes Salix deliver provide funding for energy efficiency and heat decarbonisation projects for public sector buildings as well as the housing sector. Salix's schemes are dedicated to reducing carbon emissions and supporting the government's ambitious net zero targets. These programmes include the Public Sector Decarbonisation Scheme, the Social Housing Decarbonisation Fund, Home Upgrade Grant, the Low Carbon Skills Fund and Scotland's Public Sector Heat Decarbonisation Fund.

Salix also plays an important role in increasing awareness of energy efficiency and heat decarbonisation across the public sector throughout the UK. Teams at Salix work closely with the public sector organisations throughout their decarbonisation journey, from the moment a grant is allocated to the moment the scheme is fully operational.

In January 2023 Salix's role expanded and they were appointed delivery agent for Wave 2 of the Social Housing Decarbonisation Fund and the Home Upgrade Grant schemes. These schemes provide funding for energy saving measures for social housing rented homes as well as owner occupied homes.


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