Mayor of london

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Table 4: Essex and Suffolk Water’s preferred programme for London


Short term (2010-2015)

Medium term (2015-2020)

Long term (2020-2035)

Essex and Suffolk Water (Essex WRZ)

Leakage reduction

200km of mains replacement.

Replacement of 2,000 common supply pipes in Dagenham

Pressure management

Active leakage control

200km of mains replacement

Replacement of 2,000 common supply pipes in Dagenham

Pressure management

Active leakage control


Change of occupier metering to achieve 60% meter penetration

Compulsory metering to achieve 81% meter penetration for 2020 and 89% for 2025)

Water efficiency

Enhanced water efficiency programme

Enhanced water efficiency programme

Enhanced water efficiency programme.

Resource development

Abberton Scheme, increases water available by 64Ml/d.

None needed

Possible need for new water resource.

Source: Essex and Suffolk Water, Final WRMP

3.50 Figure 5 below shows the supply-demand balance in 2026, which takes into account population growth projections and the options water companies plan to manage supply and demand highlighted above.

[Figure 5: Water resources – deficit forecasts]

d) Water supply infrastructure funding and delivery

3.51 In parallel with their WRMPs, water companies are required to produce business plans that set out how they will fund the first five years of their plan. The funding for investment in water supply infrastructure is raised through charges to water company customers. The price that the companies can charge is regulated by the Water Services Regulation Authority (Ofwat) through the five-yearly business planning process29.


a) Strategic wastewater infrastructure

3.52 Thames Water is the sole sewerage undertaker for London. It is responsible for managing the sewage treatment works (STW) and the sewerage network e.g. the pipes and pumping stations which make up London’s wastewater infrastructure. Much of central London has a combined drainage system, which carries both surface and wastewater. London’s sewage is treated at eight major STW - Beckton, Crossness, Mogden, Riverside and Long Reach that discharge effluent to the tidal River Thames and Hogsmill, Beddington and Deephams that discharge into freshwater tributaries of the Thames.

b) Wastewater infrastructure need

3.53 Wastewater infrastructure is essential to sustain urban life. The Urban Waste Water Treatment Directive (UWWTD) requires that urban waste water should be properly collected and treated. A case is being brought against the UK Government by the European Commission, who maintain that London’s combined drainage system does not meet the obligations under this Directive. In some locations, as little as 2mm of rainfall can result in discharges of storm sewage to the Thames Tideway, with discharges occurring 50-60 times in a typical year. It is estimated that 39 million cubic metres of storm sewage is discharged to the river in a typical year, from the combined sewer overflows (CSOs) and the tideway sewage treatment works (STW). This could rise to 70 cubic metres per year by 2020 unless significant improvements are implemented30, but by 2015 this figure should reduce to some 18 million cubic metres due to the construction of the Lee Tunnel. These discharges can have a significant adverse effect on dissolved oxygen levels, the ecology of the river and may impact on the health of river users31. The need for strategic wastewater infrastructure to address these issues is given in Thames Water’s ‘Thames Tunnel Needs Report’32 and the ‘Thames Tideway Strategic Study’33. On a more local scale if sewers are not maintained and upgraded to support growth this can result in CSOs operating in a way that causes environmental harm and an increase in the number of pollution incidents.

3.54 The quality of London’s water bodies must be improved if they are to meet the requirements of the European Water Framework Directive (WFD). None of London’s rivers are currently meeting good ecological status (see Figure 6). It is essential that strategic wastewater infrastructure is planned and provided in a timely way to support existing and new development to maintain and improve water quality in London. There can be severe consequences for the health of the aquatic environments upon which we depend for safe drinking water, recreation, and wildlife if wastewater infrastructure provision does not keep pace with development. The Environment Agency’s ‘London Environmental Infrastructure Needs: A Strategic Study’ (LEINS), gives further evidence on the need for planning of strategic wastewater infrastructure.

[Figure 6: Ecological status/potential of river water bodies in Greater London under WFD]

c) Wastewater infrastructure provision

3.55 The London Tideway Improvement Programme will help address the issues highlighted above and consists of three components:

  • Upgrades and/or capacity extensions to Crossness, Beckton, Mogden, Long Reach and Riverside STW. These upgrades, which are currently under construction, will improve the quality of the effluent and increase the amount of sewage the sites can treat, so reducing the frequency and size of storm discharges to the river. The upgrades are due to be completed in 2014 and should largely accommodate population growth until 2021;

  • The Lee Tunnel, which together with the extensions to the Beckton STW, will largely eliminate the overflows from the Abbey Mills pumping station, which is currently the largest single source of storm sewage to the river. This too is under construction and is expected to be completed in 2015;

  • The Thames Tunnel is in its development phase. The second round of public consultation was launched on 4th November 2011 and will continue until 10th February 2012. As currently designed, it will capture flows from 31 unsatisfactory CSOs along the tideway, and convey them for treatment at the extended Beckton STW. Three of the 34 unsatisfactory CSOs now have local solutions. If funding is secured it should be completed by 2023 and will help to ensure that the Beckton and Crossness sewerage systems can provide flexibility and capacity for London's growing population34.

3.56 As part of its Business Plan for 2010-2015 (AMP5) Thames Water is developing and implementing a proposal for a major upgrade of Deephams STW to provide sufficient capacity to accommodate growth up to 2026. This project will not be completed until the 2015-2020 period (AMP6).

3.57 To support the proposed housing growth in London beyond 2021, Thames Water may have to increase its overall sewage treatment capacity to cope with an increased population of around 740,000 by 203135. Some of London’s smaller treatment works, away from the Thames Tideway, may require some extra capacity before 2021. Future provision after 2021 will be identified and planned for by Thames Water through their future business plans after consultations with local planning authorities.

d) Wastewater infrastructure funding and delivery

3.58 The funding for investment in wastewater infrastructure is raised through charges to water company customers. Thames Water will seek approval from the Water Services Regulation Authority (OFWAT) to invest in strategic growth schemes through the five-yearly periodic review of water company prices36. The next periodic review will be in 2014. In the period 2010-2015, Thames Water expects to invest some £1.3 billion to upgrade five of London’s sewage treatment works and to construct the Lee Tunnel. The cost of the Thames Tunnel is currently expected to be £4.1 billion, but the precise figure depends on a number of external factors. The upgrade to Deephams STW is expected to cost several hundred million pounds. There may also need to be additional investment in local sewers and sewage treatment works to accommodate growth up to 2031. The Environment Agency’s London Environmental Infrastructure Needs: A Strategic Study’ (LEINS) report estimated that an additional £335 million may need to be invested in London’s sewage treatment works over this period to prevent deterioration in water status and that further investment will be needed to improve London’s water quality.

3.59 In reality, the cost of managing water quality is expected to be even higher, as there are other costs that are not included in the above figures. The additional costs may include future investment driven by measures in the Thames River Basin Management Plan, sewer network improvements, sewer flood alleviation schemes, sewage treatment work expansions to cope with greater effluent volume and improvements to sewage sludge disposal (£195 million until 2015).


a) Strategic flood risk management infrastructure

3.60 London is at risk from flooding from a number of sources including tidal, fluvial, groundwater, surface water and sewer flooding. The Environment Agency has a strategic overview for flooding from rivers, the sea, surface water and groundwater, and an operational role to manage flood risk from rivers and the sea37. Lead Local Flood Authorities lead on the local management of flooding from surface water, ordinary watercourses and groundwater. In London this role falls to the London Boroughs.

3.61 The Environment Agency has published the Thames Catchment Flood Management Plan (CFMP)38, which sets out options for flood risk management within the non-tidal Thames catchment. It is due to publish its final flood risk management plan for the Thames Estuary, TE210039 in late 2012 following Government sign-off. The London boroughs are working together on the Drain London Forum to carry out their new role in understanding and managing flood risk from surface water, ordinary watercourses and groundwater. Each borough now has a Preliminary Flood Risk Assessment, a Strategic Flood Risk Assessment and a Surface Water Management Plan.

3.62 The Regional Flood Risk Appraisal40 shows major development areas at risk and illustrates how a wide range of important utilities/services are affected by flood risk. It will be important to ensure that flood risk is suitably managed for assets so that services will continue to be provided under flood conditions. Its recommendations reflect some necessary prioritisation of actions.

b) Flood risk management infrastructure need

3.63 There are 516,000 properties at risk of flooding from rivers and the sea in London. Of these 40,000 are at significant risk of flooding41, while 85% have a low likelihood of flooding due to the presence flood defences (Figure 7). The probability of flooding is expected to increase into the future due to climate change, with potentially high consequences for undefended areas of the city. Future development in London should be targeted towards areas at a lower likelihood of flooding.

3.64 London’s greatest risk of flooding comes from the River Thames. Much of London’s flood management efforts and resources are allocated to protecting the city from tidal flooding. As a result, London benefits from a very high degree of protection against tidal flooding i.e. it has less than a 0.1 per cent chance of tidal flooding in any given year.

3.65 The Thames Barrier forms part of the tidal defences in London. It has been raised over 100 times since it became operational in 1982. Just over two thirds of these have been since 2000. Climate change is altering the nature of our weather. This means that the number of times the Thames Barrier is raised, to protect London from high tides and storm surges in the Thames Estuary and high river flows from the tributaries, will increase as sea levels rise and the intensity and frequency of storms increase.

3.66 In terms of fluvial flooding, none of the River Thames tributaries enjoy the same high level of protection and some are completely undefended. The Thames Catchment Flood Risk Management Plan (CFMP) sets out short, medium and long term strategies and actions required to manage flood risk on fluvial rivers in London.

[Figure 7: The occurrence of Flood Zones across Greater London (areas benefiting from flood defences are also shown)]

3.67 We have a good understanding of flooding from rivers and tidal sources. Surface water and groundwater is with the production of the Surface Water Management Plans for each borough becoming better understood. The next step is for boroughs to investigate the higher risk areas identified in the Surface Water Management Plans. The Drain London project is continuing to support boroughs in this role. The Surface Water Management Plans will represent key evidence for Local Flood Risk Management Strategies which London Boroughs have a duty to produce under the Flood and Water Management Act 2010. Drain London is currently implementing a £1.5 million programme of demonstration and investigation projects including Community Flood Plans, green roofs, flood storage and drainage measures to mitigate surface water flood risk.

3.68 London currently has an adequate network of flood defences and many homes and businesses that would otherwise be at risk of flooding benefit from these defences (Figure 7). However, with changes to funding mechanisms and flood risk management practices, future flood risk improvements may be achieved less through traditional “hard defences” and more through other means.

c) Flood risk management infrastructure provision

3.69 The most sustainable way of managing fluvial and tidal flood risk, particularly for new development, is to locate it in areas of lowest flood risk. However, where this is not possible other ways to protect people and property from flooding need to be found.

3.70 Technical and economic constraints to further reductions in flood risk mean reliance on “hard” flood defences may not be viable. In addition, the amount of development along the edge of watercourses means that options for structural solutions are limited in large parts of London.

3.71 The Thames CFMP identifies redevelopment as a key mechanism for managing flood risk in London. Many sites currently at risk of flooding will be redeveloped. Improving the layout and design of these redeveloped sites provides a crucial opportunity to keep people safe and reduce flood risk to surrounding communities.

3.72 The Thames Estuary 2100 (TE2100)42 plan sets out actions for ensuring that London remains protected from tidal flooding for the next century. Within the period covered by the London Plan, actions focus on the maintenance of and improvements to the tidal defence network. The TE2100 plan shows that the Thames Barrier will continue to provide a high level of protection until around 2070.

3.73 The Environment Agency’s Programme for Flood and Coastal Risk Management Schemes sets out the expected work programme to 2015/16. However, only works for this financial year have been confirmed. For 2011/12, projects within London include major works within the Thames Estuary, works on the Deptford Creek which are expected to benefit over 8,000 properties and works on the Salmon and Ching Brooks which are expected to benefit nearly 4,000 properties.

d) Flood risk management infrastructure funding and delivery

3.74 The Environment Agency has committed £8m of spend on maintaining and replacing the tidal defences along the Thames Estuary within this financial year, with spend over the next five years expected to reach £40m43. Overall spend on Environment Agency flood risk management schemes in London is expected to reach £14m this financial year, with the majority of spend on the Thames Estuary. In addition, £3m of local levy funding has been confirmed for projects in London for this financial year. Over the next ten years, the Environment Agency expects to spend about £300 million on maintaining and replacing the tidal defences along the Thames Estuary.

3.75 In May 2011 Defra announced a new approach to funding flood risk management called ‘ Flood and Coastal Resilience Partnership Funding’. The new approach has the aim of allowing a wider range of schemes to be eligible for part funding from central government, with more funding in the form of contributions from beneficiaries e.g. communities and developers. There is also a greater emphasis on funding for flood risk management schemes where the benefits are wider than flood risk management, including improvements in deprived areas and biodiversity benefits. It is likely that most tidal schemes in central London currently proposed by the Environment Agency will qualify for full flood defence grant in aid. However, smaller schemes, including community-led initiatives and measures proposed to address surface water flood risk, may require more of a split between flood defence grant in aid and other funding.


3.76 Information for energy infrastructure is initially largely based on some initial engagement with key energy companies (UK Power Networks (UKPN) and National Grid). In addition, the Mayor’s Climate Change Mitigation and Energy Strategy (Delivering London’s Energy Future), which commits London to providing 25 % of its energy need through decentralised energy sources by 2025, signals a shift in the traditional provision and consumption patterns.

a) Strategic energy infrastructure

3.77 This includes both the distribution networks and the transmission infrastructure between the energy generation and the Distribution Network Operators (DNOs) (in London: UKPN and Scottish & Southern Energy Power Distribution (SSEPD) for electricity and National Grid Gas and Southern Gas Networks44 for gas). Figure 8 provides a wider overview of the companies/organisations currently involved in the energy market.

3.78 For electricity National Grid owns and manages the high-voltage45 electricity transmission system in England and Wales. Key transmission infrastructure includes the high-voltage power lines/cables (which are either installed in the ground with other utilities or in deep tunnels constructed specifically for that purpose) and the substations that reduce the voltage for further distribution by the DNOs. The DNOs develop and maintain their network of cables and substations at voltages from 132 kV to 230 volts including the connections to the end users.

3.79 For gas National Grid owns and manages the high-pressure National Transmission System, which transports gas from offshore terminals to Local Distribution Zones, which operate at lower pressure and supply the majority of consumers46. Key infrastructure includes various transmission networks, high/low pressure storage facilities including gasholders.

3.80 In terms of energy generation there are some power stations in London, which are directly connected to National Grid’s higher-voltage transmission network. There are currently no plans for the construction of new power stations. However, in the light of CO2 reduction targets and a range of challenges and uncertainty surrounding the UK’s electricity supply, decentralised energy opportunities, feeding into the DNO’s lower-voltage networks such as large-scale heat networks, Combined Heat and Power (CHP) plants and microgeneration such as photovoltaics on individual buildings are rapidly gaining importance47, as well as energy from waste plants

b) Energy infrastructure need

3.81 The London Energy and Greenhouse Gas Inventory (LEGGI) provides data for greenhouse gas emissions and energy consumption for London. According to LEGGI greenhouse gas emissions generally increased during the 1990s followed by a stabilisation with significant drops in 2004 and 2008. Into the future the Mayor supports a reduction in energy demand through a range of energy efficiency initiatives including retrofitting and a decentralised energy programme.48

[Figure 8: The energy market]

3.82 However, electricity demand is – after a temporary decrease during the economic downturn - forecast to return to a long-run average increase of 1 to 4 % per year49 in the medium term, and with sustained levels of population and business growth the spare electricity capacity in London’s 11 kV network is significantly diminishing. In particular in Central London and in Opportunity Areas such as Vauxhall, Nine Elms, Battersea (VNEB), developers and businesses are concerned about electricity infrastructure provision, and some development is at least held up by negotiations to agree the reinforcement necessary and for this to be constructed. In the City, there has also been a significant increase in demand for capacities exceeding 5 MW to meet a particularly high IT use, and UK Power Networks are constructing a new 33 kV distribution network to meet these demands. It is expected that through further engagement with National Grid, UKPN and SSEPD a comprehensive and spatial overview of the existing network of substations and of areas with potential future capacity shortfalls (if no new substations are provided) is included in the final version of this document.

3.83 Gas is the most significant source of energy in the UK; excluding the transport sector it provides the majority of the energy used in London, directly or by fuelling electricity generators. National Grid’s latest national gas consumption forecast indicates that total gas demand will decrease by 7.6 % by 2020. The annual gas usage in North London is expected to drop from 57 TWh in 2011 to 53 TWh in 2020. A number of factors are contributing to this decline including the anticipated state of the economy, affordability and increased utilisation efficiency and new technologies such as Smart Metering. Peak demand is expected to fall more slowly than annual demand because affordability is less of a concern to customers during periods of severely cold weather50.

3.84 National Grid and Southern Gas also facilitate the increasing entry of renewable gas into the grid. Renewable gas is expected to become more important in the future and is a way of de-carbonising the gas grid. The Government is introducing a Renewable Heat Incentive that is intended to assist in the development of the renewable gas industry. As a result of the declining overall demand no major reinforcement works to increase capacity are required. However, in significant new development areas such as Opportunity Areas reinforcement may be required to serve their energy centres, for example gas-fired CHPs.

3.85 The gas distribution network in London faces the particular challenge that the large 48-inch cast iron mains were laid back in the 1870s/1880s and require replacement due to the risks of gas escapes. Approx. 60 % of London’s gas mains have been replaced with polyethylene.

3.86 There are around a dozen active low-pressure gas holder sites in London. It is expected that most of these will be decommissioned in the next decade resulting in brownfield land being released for development.

3.87 An additional national challenge from the Transmission and Distribution Companies’ perspective will be the less predictable and less controllable nature of some of the renewable sources such as large-scale wind power51 and how the network can accommodate such additional generation. However, these issues have to be addressed to facilitate the implementation of the Mayor’s decentralised energy target.

3.88 Whilst different from infrastructure needs addressed above, the infrastructure opportunities of decentralised energy provision in particular through medium and large-scale heat networks fed initially by CHP generation and sources of waste head should be highlighted. The largest renewables opportunity is in the wide-scale deployment of small ad medium-scale renewable heat and power technologies, particular photovoltaics. It is projected that renewables could supply more than 10,000 GWh of energy or 12 % of London’s total energy supply and decentralised energy as a whole in excess of 25% of London’s energy needs. However, there are a range of barriers to the realisation of the decentralised energy opportunities including barriers to investment in heat and electricity infrastructure and the regulatory framework.52

c) Energy infrastructure provision

3.89 National Grid’s London Cable Tunnels programme worth approx £ 1 bn is underway. Its Phase 1 (completion by 2015) will provide a new tunnel route from Willesden to Hackney and from Wimbledon to Kensal Green. At the latter and at Finsbury Park new substations will be built subsequently for the purposes, respectively, of providing traction supplies to the Cross Rail project and to support current and forecasted demand in Central London. National Grid’s substations typically occupy an area of up to 250m x100m with a height of below 15 m.

3.90 UK Power Networks plans to invest in electricity distribution infrastructure in London spending approx. £600m in the five year regulatory period to March 2015. This investment involves establishing a number of new main substations where electricity is transformed from 132 kV to 11 kV, and this, in turn requires the installation of new 132 kV cables. Such substations, which typically require a footprint in excess of 1000mand a minimum headroom of 10m, require a construction period of about two years although this may increase for a complex site. UKPN is also developing a new 33 kV network to supply new loads greater than 5MVA in the vicinity of the City. It is often not possible to install 132 kV cables using “open cut” techniques, and hence UKPN is currently constructing a deep tunnel from New Cross to The City. This forms part of an overall reinforcement strategy and will increase both capacity and resilience in The City. UKPN has recently completed a major project to install six new transformers and associated switchgear at Bankside substation, and is currently constructing new 132 kV/11 kV substations at Osborn Street and Limeburner Lane, as well as uprating Moreton Street substation in Pimlico to 132 kV. It is expected that further details in particular about SSEPDs infrastructure investments plans will be included in the final version of this document.

3.91 In respect of gas, the following maps (Figures 9 and 10) show National Grid’s and Southern Gas’ main Local Distribution System (brown/green) and the offtakes from the National Transmission Systems. It is National Grid’s intention to replace over 3,000km of iron mains in London in the period up to April 2021, including a proportion of the very large-diameter cast iron pipes most of which are located in highly-urbanised environments such as central London. Here it will be particular important to explore synergies with construction and underground works of developers and other infrastructure providers. In Outer London the focus will be on replacing significant lengths of smaller low-pressure pipes. This programme is agreed with the Health and Safety Executive (HSE).

[Figure 9: National Grid’s North Thames Local Distribution Zone]

[Figure 10: Southern Gas’ South East Local Distribution Zone (extract)]

3.92 It is expected that the information about specific significant investment schemes included in National Grid’s and Southern Gas’ Business Plans that have been submitted to the regulator Ofgem will be included in the final version of this document2 .

3.93 To achieve the Mayor’s decentralised energy target the development of decentralised heating and cooling networks as well as large-scale heat and electricity transmission networks is essential. The London Heat Map helps to identify key locations for decentralised energy opportunities. A number of potential heat networks have been identified and mapped out, together with their potential heat sources and sources of heat demand and these include in particular the Opportunity Areas. A number of CHP plants have already been identified and policy drivers promote them, in particular for major developments. These are the following CHP-led district energy schemes: Olympic Park and Stratford City, Citigen, the Pimlico District Heating Undertaking (PDHU), Barkantine Heat and Power, Whitehall District Heating Scheme, the Bunhill Energy Centre, King’s Cross Central and the University College London and Bloomsbury CHP.

3.94 The Mayor’s Decentralised Energy Programme Delivery Unit (DEPDU), provides services to help others develop and bring to market their decentralised energy schemes. The Mayor contributes to the delivery of exemplar decentralised energy projects such as the London Thames Gateway Heat Network or the Upper Lee Valley Energy Network, which are geared towards unlocking barriers to investment by the private sector. The cost of infrastructure for such large-scale projects tends to exceed £ 100 million. The total investment required to achieve the Mayor’s target is in the order of £ 5 – £ 7 billion over the next 15 years.53

d) Energy infrastructure funding and delivery

3.95 Funding for investment in the electricity and gas infrastructure is raised through transportation charges, which are paid to the network operators for transmission through the networks. The price that the companies can charge is regulated by Ofgem. They set the maximum amount of revenue which the operators can take through charges they levy on users of their networks to cover their costs and earn them a return in line with agreed expectations. Ofgem’s upcoming price control reviews reflect the a new regulatory framework (the so-called RIIO model54) which is intended to put more emphasis on incentives to drive the innovation needed to deliver a sustainable energy network at value for money to existing and future consumers. It also highlights greater opportunities to influence Ofgem and network company decision-making.55

3.96 National Grid has submitted draft Electricity and Gas Transmission RIIO-T1 Business Plan for 2013 – 2021 to Ofgem in July 2011. Demand forecasts from the DNOs have been taken into account. After further stakeholder consultation a revised plan will be submitted in March 2012. For electricity the plan set out National Grid’s strategy for infrastructure modernisation and new connections and includes expenditure of £ 23.5 bn between 2013 and 2021. Over £ 7 bn will be spent on new connections and at least £ 6 bn on replacing existing assets largely built in the 1950s/1960s. For gas there will be the need to connect new and expanding sources of gas (e.g bio-gas from waste56) and provide new gas offtakes. Investment of ca. £ 272 million is planned to increase the network’s flexibility allowing greater control over more variable supply patterns.

3.97 For gas distribution National Grid and Southern Gas have submitted their draft RIIO-GD1 Business Plans to Ofgem at the end of November 2011. After further consultation a revised final version will be submitted in April 2012.

3.98 For electricity distribution the current price review period goes until 2015 and the formal preparation for the following period (RIIO-ED1) from 2015 to 2023 will get underway in 2012. In anticipation of this, UKPN have started to consult with customers and stakeholders on the requirements for their RIIO-ED1 business plan with particular emphasis on the underlying planning assumptions and the key output measures that they might be assessed against.

3.99 The regulatory regime requires that customers are protected from companies spending irresponsibly to build the value of their asset base, it can have the effect of constraining investment until it is unambiguously required. This situation is further compounded by the complexity of development in London.

3.100 The constraint of investment in infrastructure ahead of need raises questions about the incentive for the DNOs to plan more comprehensively and for the long-term the infrastructure required to accommodate further growth and business needs, although the London Plan provides robust evidence to underpin its growth figures. Planning with longer-term timescales could potentially also be more cost effective and prevent delays as they currently occur when new infrastructure is required. UKPN however states that it maintains clear plans for the long-term development and enhancement of its London Network. Delivering the upgrades required to the electricity distribution infrastructure requires a definition of ‘efficient investment’ which takes account of the particular needs of London. This is best characterised as a longer-term perspective of efficiency, thus recognising the time taken to deliver infrastructure and the scope for a single major development to impact on the capacity of the network. The Mayor may consider exploring the promotion of potential improvements to the way in particular electricity infrastructure is provided and ensuring a forward planning orientated distribution of costs and risk. He and the boroughs may also consider using CIL and s106 to fund energy networks and renewable energy technologies and infrastructure. There is further potential for funding through Allowable Solutions as part of the requirements for new development to be zero carbon – residential 2016 and non-residential 2019. In partnership with London First officers have already started engaging with relevant companies and the regulator and are looking at the engagement process for the next price review, which gets formally underway in 2012.

3.101 The following specific issue illustrates the Mayor’s concerns further: A new substation may cost a DNO approx £ 15 million, and costs would normally be recovered from a developer whose development may exceed the available network capacity within an area. A developer may face in such a situation a major cost for a new piece of electricity infrastructure that could go well beyond his needs. – DNOs may view this situation differently: For a major new development, the demand created may exceed the capacity available within the local network. The regulatory framework requires the developer to pay for the provision of the additional capacity which is required for their sole-use. Whilst the distribution company will pay for any additional reinforcement in the area, as it is in the common good, and the developer will be compensated for any capacity created which is over and above their needs, the developer may still be faced by a substantial upfront cost57. He may also have to integrate the infrastructure (e.g. a new substation) into his development site. This piecemeal way that developers contribute to the provision of electricity infrastructure potentially puts a risk on the viability of developments or leads to a reduction of developer contributions that can be made for affordable housing or sustainable transport provision.

3.102 The Mayor may also consider helping to identify land for required new substations and possibly facilitating coordination of new cable routes with other infrastructure providers in the light of concerns of road works causing congestion. This could be underpinned by an appropriate London Plan policy dealing with land for energy infrastructure.

3.103 To support the Mayor’s decentralised energy target public money needs to be invested initially to mitigate underlying risks and to create opportunities for private investment and to develop markets in the decentralised energy sector. DEPDU will provide guidance to Boroughs on business models. The Energy Service Company (ESCO) is a common model for the delivery of small-scale decentralised energy schemes. The Government’s Green Investment Bank proposals will also provide an important opportunity to develop energy infrastructure58. The principle could be that the bank would fund an entire investment and returns are made according to the rate of connecting new customers. The Mayor seeks to influence the Government on its programmes that support decentralised energy. Other incentives exist that will support the deployment of decentralised energy including Renewables Obligation, Feed in Tariff, Renewable Heat Incentive and Climate Change Levy. The Mayor has also secured around £3 million in European Local Energy Assistance (ELENA) funding from the European Investment Bank to support the commercialisation of large scale decentralised energy projects. This funding is supporting a team of experts to take potential decentralised energy projects from concept through to investment grade proposals.

3.104 Under the new regulatory regime, decentralised energy offers the DNOs the opportunity to off-set network investment by supporting the network at peak times. There is also the opportunity to intelligently integrate the decentralised energy supply chain from production to consumption using so called Smart Technology59.

3.105 UKPN’s Low Carbon London programme is exploring how the electricity distribution network should change to support the delivery of the London’s carbon reduction target. It aims to do this by installing smart meters in the Mayor’s Low Carbon Zones and Green Enterprise District. monitoring electric vehicle use, trialling demand response contracts with industrial and commercial customers in the City of London and the Green Enterprise District, establishing a Low Carbon London Learning Laboratory at Imperial College London.


3.106 Information for telecommunications infrastructure is initially largely based on input from British Telecom (BT) and their six-monthly rolling infrastructure work program. Information from the regulator Ofcom and from BT’s competitors with a significant share of London’s market is expected to be included in the final version of this document.

a) Strategic telecommunications infrastructure

3.107 This includes the availability of fast broadband60 and ethernet connections as well as Wi-Fi Hotspots. The required physical infrastructure includes data centre and street cabinets as well as the copper, fibre and ethernet connections. Wi-Fi equipment can be included in residential and business premises but also in pay phones, bus stops and lampposts.

b) Telecommunications infrastructure need

3.108 Telecommunications is a fast-growing sector, and software companies are particularly thriving in London compared with other European cities61, reflecting London’s global city role as a finance and creative capital. An economic evidence base for the Mayor’s Digital London initiative has been produced62. It has been identified that ICT companies concentrate mainly in the CAZ but also for example in the Docklands and Greenwich (back offices). Moreover, a digital hub is fast developing in East London. The area has experienced 700% growth over the past three years63. The survival of these companies is dependent upon fast telecommunications infrastructure – without this London’s digital economy will not be globally competitive.

3.109 The use of the internet for domestic use is also increasing rapidly with the increasing popularity of online buying and selling, home working and online marketing as contributing factors. The growing demand for bandwidth is driven in the residential sector largely by innovation in the entertainment sector (HD TV, etc). The Olympic Games in 2012 will significantly increase the demand in particular for instant internet access anywhere in London requiring a further roll out of wireless coverage. There are currently 380,000 Wifi Hotspots in London with BT’s aim to increase this to 500,000 by the Olympic Games.

3.110 In 2011, 19 million (77 %) of households in Great Britain had an Internet connection. Access barriers for the remaining 5.7 million include the high cost of equipment and the lack of skills to use the internet. However, for over half of those without a connection it is a deliberate choice.64

3.111 Data centres represent important telecommunications equipment for many large businesses in London. To ensure complete resilience for un-interrupted service the distance to the data centre should not exceed 22 miles.

c) Telecommunications infrastructure provision

3.112 Policy 4.11 of the London Plan promotes the expansion of modern telecommunications infrastructure and aims to address e-exclusion.

3.113 According to BT almost everywhere in London high-speed broadband (up to65 24 Mbit/s) is available. The roll out of super-fast broadband (up to 110 Mbit/s) is under development with the coverage of 2.6 million premises in London expected by March 2012. It requires a fibre connection directly to the premises or at least to a street cabinet. BT provides the first for new development areas if the developer informs them at an early stage. For large business services BT provides an ethernet connection (up to 10 Gbit/s). The maps on the following page (Figures 11 and 12) show BT’s existing and planned (until March 2012) super-fast and ethernet deployment. Areas where currently no super-fast broadband is planned include mainly remote areas in north-east Hillingdon, Brent and south Croydon as well as the City of London and other business centres. These areas mainly cater for large businesses through the provision of ethernet connections but less well for the relatively few residential customers and SMEs. In terms of ethernet deployment the majority of London can be connected. The ‘white’ areas, where connections are technically possible but potentially more expensive to provide, include individual areas within the north of London as well as areas in Bexley, Lambeth, south Bromley and south Croydon.

3.114 It should be noted that the information provided for BT’s coverage should be complemented with information from its competitors with a significant share of London’s market such as Virgin Media. Such information is expected to be included in the final version of this document.

3.115 As telecommunications infrastructure equipment becomes smaller through innovation, over time the size and number of the exchanges required is likely to decrease.

[Figure 11: Super-fast broadband deployment in London]

[Figure 12: Ethernet deployment in London]
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