Energy saving made easy

The University of London and Newham University Hospital NHS Trust are the first public sector bodies in London to use the Mayor’s RE:FIT framework to retrofit public buildings with energy saving measures to cut carbon emissions.

RE:FIT, run by the London Development Agency, helps public bodies in London to cut carbon emissions from their buildings by appointing an energy service company (ESCo) which undertakes energy efficiency measures to guarantee a set level of energy savings. This guarantee transfers the risk onto the ESCo rather than the owner or occupier of the building in an approach known as Energy Performance Contracting (EPC).

The Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, announced last year that RE:FIT’s panel of pre-selected energy services companies (ESCos) would be made available to all public sector organisations in London – and the UK. In signing up, organisations cut red tape and the duplication of work, saving the time and money involved in finding a suitable supplier.

The University of London and Newham University Hospital NHS Trust have issued mini-competition tenders to the twelve RE:FIT suppliers and are looking to each choose a supplier who can deliver the work by the end of this financial year. The ESCos have been selected through an approved procurement process which saves time and expense for users of the framework. Public bodies – including hospitals, museums, universities and local authorities – can choose from RE:FIT’s panel of specially selected ESCos.

The Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, said: “The London RE:FIT programme has been designed to help universities, councils, hospitals and other public organisations fit energy-busting gizmos in their buildings and achieve guaranteed financial savings. We have set out to remove a large chunk of paperwork for these organisations, avoiding the duplication of work and enabling them to crack on with work on the ground.

“I am thrilled that University of London and the Newham University NHS Trust are leading the charge and I urge others to take up a carbon cutting scheme that is too good to ignore.”

The University of London’s Energy Manager, Ian Lane said: “We are delighted to be of one the first organisations to use this innovative framework and are confident it will bring reductions in our energy bills by 2014.”

RE:FIT is predicted to save around 2.5 million tonnes of carbon by 2025 and to help achieve the Mayor of London’s target of cutting London carbon dioxide emissions by 60% by 2025. RE:FIT has already retrofitted 42 public buildings across London, owned by the Greater London Authority, the London Fire Brigade, Transport for London and the Metropolitan Police – making an average energy saving of 28%.

Following a RE:FIT seminar at London’s City Hall earlier this month, over 130 organisations are now engaged with the programme. A further 20 organisations have pledged to undertake mini competitions in the near future.

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