Clear incentive for London's workplaces to switch off lights, Assembly told
Switching off unnecessary lights would save money for London's workplaces, which is a clear incentive in the current economic climate, the Assembly's Environment Committee heard today.
(Media-Newswire.com) - Switching off unnecessary lights would save money for London’s workplaces, which is a clear incentive in the current economic climate, the Assembly’s Environment Committee heard today.
In the capital, workplaces make up 43 percent of carbon emissions and lighting accounts for a fifth of these . It has been estimated that lighting costs could be cut by up to 15 percent simply by turning off lights in areas that are not being used .
Howard Dawber, head of strategy at the Canary Wharf Group, told the Committee that the Government’s Carbon Reduction Commitment Energy Efficiency Scheme ( CRC ), is acting as an incentive for companies to adopt energy savings policies because it is now a business cost. Under the scheme, all organisations whose annual electricity bill is equivalent to about £500,000 a year must measure their carbon emissions and “buy” allowances to cover their emissions for the previous year .
“There is a real incentive there to try to save money where you can,” Mr Dawber said. “These sorts of mechanisms do concentrate the mind.”
As part of its investigation into lights left on in London’s workplaces, the Committee also heard how spending cuts could affect momentum around public sector promotion of energy saving policies.
Chair of the Environment Committee, Darren Johnson AM, said: “In the current economic climate, and with rising energy prices, it is more worthwhile than ever for companies and organisations to save energy - it cuts costs as well as carbon emissions.
“Making sure the lights are off when the working day is over doesn't cost anything and can save significant money. Pressures on public spending may put a squeeze on future work to promote environmental policies, but we need to ensure people still have easy access to information and advice on how they can take steps to reduce their energy use.”
For its investigation, the Committee is looking at the reasons why lights are left on and what can be done to promote energy-saving policies. It is also assessing the potential advantages and disadvantages for different businesses of turning off their lights overnight. The Committee’s full report on lights left on in London’s workplaces is due to be published in early 2011.
Notes to editors:
Figures given in Mayor’s draft Climate Change Mitigation and Energy Strategy ( February 2010 ), see pages 25 and 112, available here See data on The Carbon Trust website, which is available here Details of the CRC Energy Efficiency scheme are available here Watch a webcast of the meeting here Darren Johnson AM, Chair of the Environment Committee, is available for interview. See contact details below. As well as investigating issues that matter to Londoners, the London Assembly acts as a check and a balance on the Mayor. For more details, please contact Julie Wheldon/ Lisa Moore in the Assembly Media Office on 020 7983 4228/4283. For out of hours media enquiries please call 020 7983 4000 and ask for the Assembly duty press officer. Non-media enquiries should be directed to the Public Liaison Unit, Greater London Authority, on 020 7983 4100.
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