New scheme cuts thousands of tonnes of carbon emissions across Southwark

Over 2000 households in Southwark will benefit from low carbon heating due to a ground-breaking renewable energy scheme developed by Vital Energi which will save thousands of tonnes of carbon dioxide from being released into the environment.

Vital Energi is retrofitting water source heat pumps within an existing high temperature heat network across three Southwark estates - with this being the first time this has been achieved within the capital.

In addition to new heat pumps, the estates will benefit from improvements to the district mains, boiler house works and electrical upgrades.  All of the works are scheduled to be complete before summer this year, and will help the council to achieve the Government’s Decent Homes standard.

The initiative is part of the council’s strategy to tackle climate change and better protect the environment from polluting gases. Approximately 79% of the borough’s carbon emissions come from buildings.

“We are pleased to have worked with Southwark Council on this innovative project which will benefit over 2,000 residents with a more resilient, efficient, low carbon heat supply. The scheme will also ensure the improvement of local air quality, helping the borough on its path to decarbonisation.”

Rob Callaghan, Managing Director of Vital's London Division

Southwark’s Councillor Helen Dennis and Councillor Stephanie Cryan recently visited the Wyndham estate to find out more about the scheme and its impact on the borough.

Councillor Helen Dennis, Cabinet Member for the Climate Emergency and Sustainable Development said: “Tackling the climate emergency is a top priority for Southwark Council. These new heat pumps will deliver a win-win for residents, keeping their homes warm whilst generating renewable energy and removing thousands of tonnes of carbon dioxide (CO2) from the air.

“Our Climate Change Strategy & Action Plan is clear that we all need to do everything we can to reduce our carbon emissions, and help tackle the climate emergency together. Tackling emissions from buildings is crucial, and this project sits alongside our Green Buildings Fund, and the work we have already undertaken to green council buildings across Southwark.”

Councillor Stephanie Cryan, Cabinet Member for Council Homes and Homelessness added: “We are working across the council to tackle the climate emergency that is facing us all. I am delighted that these works will further improve the quality of housing for our residents and also help us meet our ambitions for a healthier environment.”

The carbon savings from the initiative equate to 3,848 people flying from Gatwick to Chicago every year, or an average car travelling 13,468,000 miles every year. It would allow 16,000 people to drive across the UK, from Land's End to John O'Groats.

Find out more about how Southwark’s new heat pump networks will operate.