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London’s zero carbon city plans kick-started with £500 million energy efficiency fund

Image: Daniel Chapman/Flickr.

Image: Daniel Chapman/Flickr.

The Mayor of London’s Energy Efficiency Fund (MEEF) has secured £500 million of funding as the capital’s bid to become a zero carbon city by 2050 shifts into gear.

That finance will be offered to public sector bodies and selected SMEs to support individual, carbon-cutting projects such as on-site generation, battery storage and electric vehicle charging infrastructure.

MEEF is supported by both the European Regional Development Fund and managed by Amber Infrastructure, but has now secured funding from high street banks such as Natwest and Santander on top of Sumito Mitsui Banking Corporation and Triodos.

At £500 million, the fund professes to be the country’s largest ever dedicated investment fund for urban energy efficiency measures and will cater for projects with an investment period up to 20 years.

Amber Infrastructure is now welcoming applications for MEEF funding with a minimum lending of £1 million per initiative.

Mayor of London Sadiq Khan lauded the fund as a “great example” of how public and private sectors can collaborate to fast-track London towards its carbon emissions targets.

While the precise breakdown of how much each funder has provided has not been disclosed, Santander said it had committed to the equal largest senior debt contribution and would also support the fund’s day to day banking.

Mark Cumbo, director for infrastructure and renewable energy at Santander Corporate & Commercial, said: “Santander is delighted to have been chosen as the MEEF relationship bank and to be committing a material portion of the £500 million secured.

“This is a stand-out scheme for London, which is looking to lead the world in terms of carbon reduction, and we fully support the GLA, the Mayor of London and Amber Infrastructure in bringing about this compelling, long-term initiative.”

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