London has received various accolades for its eco-friendly efforts. Not only has it been crowned the ‘greenest’ city in the UK multiple times, but it was also rated as the most eco-friendly city on earth to work in according to a study by British Business Energy. These are both very impressive feats, especially considering that the city boasts a population of over 9 million. There are many reasons why London manages to maintain its eco-friendly reputation. In addition to the Greater London Metro region sporting more than 35,000 acres of green public spaces, the city is also a world leader in terms of energy efficiency, sustainable mass transport, and renewable energy.
A City that Works Together
There are various strategies being implemented in London that contribute to the city’s green rating. Current sustainability measures include the congestion charge (C-charge) and ultra-low emission (ULEZ) zones that aim to encourage cycling, the use of EVs, and sustainable public transit. One street in London has gone as far as to ban all diesel and petrol cars. Beech Street, which is situated right in the heart of the city’s financial district, is strictly restricted to cars and bikes with zero emissions, cyclists, and, of course, pedestrians. Other strategies are focussed on other aspects of the city’s environment including green infrastructure, air quality, the mitigation of climate change, ambient noise, and waste.
There is Always Work to be Done
Although London already enjoys a great green rating, there is always work to be done to improve it even more. Businesses can play a particularly big role in helping the city remain an eco-friendly powerhouse. Some simple measures include encouraging employees to make use of public or green transport, using cars and other forms of transport as little as possible during business operations, and limiting the number of single-use plastics used in the organisation. Even making a seemingly small change like replacing paper towels with hand dryers within the hospitality sector can make a notable difference. Modern-day models are energy efficient and produce very low emissions as opposed to paper towels which still tend to land up in the landfill.
Ambitious Strategies for a Cleaner Future
London has no plans to give up its title of the greenest city in the UK anytime soon. In fact, the Mayor of London has revised the city’s net-zero emissions target and rendered it even more ambitious. The old target date of 2050 was brought forward to 2030 – giving the city just 8 years to achieve carbon neutrality. The revised strategy was launched by Mayor Sadiq Khan in March 2021. During the first week of August 2022, the mayor also announced £4m in funding for a greener city that will be even more resilient to climate change. The latest funding was announced after a new report on the necessity of green importance was filed.
A lot of hard work has gone into helping London achieve its superb green rating. With more strategies being implemented continuously, it is bound to remain one of the world’s more eco-friendly cities for years to come.