New £9m fund to boost green infrastructure in London
Mayor of London Sadiq Khan has announced plans for a new £9m fund to boost trees and green infrastructure as part of his environment strategy for the capital.
Khan said that he wanted to make London the “greenest city in the world”, in an effort to tackle the city’s toxic air, combat climate change, and improve the health and wellbeing of citizens.
This would include policies to encourage more green roofs, green walls and rain gardens, while the creation of a ‘challenge map’ will help identify areas most in need of assistance.
“From our famous royal parks, to our much-loved community gardens, this ‘green infrastructure’ is a vital asset that improves air quality, boosts quality of life, conserves wildlife and attracts thousands of visitors,” Khan said.
“I’ve set out my plans to improve London’s environment by fighting pollution, tackling waste and promoting cleaner energy so we can have a healthier city that adapts to the impacts of climate change.”
The mayor also announced his intention to unveil London as the world’s first National Park City at an international summit in the spring of 2019.
This would be done by increasing the amount of green spaces in the capital, while also improving their quality and accessibility, particularly in areas where there is currently a deficiency.
Other measures outlined in the strategy include:
• A solar action plan which aims to more than double London’s solar energy generation capacity by 2030
• Policies to cut waste and encourage better use of resources, including setting minimum recycling standards
• The use of planning regulations to protect the green belt
• A fuel poverty action plan to help Londoners struggling to heat and power their homes affordably
• Proposals to improve air quality, including the introduction of a T-charge in October, an ultra-low emission zone in 2019, and cleaning up the bus fleet, as part of plans to make London a zero-carbon city by 2050.
Local groups will be able to apply for the first £1m of grants to plant trees and maintain green community areas, while a public consultation is now open until 17 November.
“I want to hear your views and ideas about how we can make London the greenest city in the world,” Khan added.