The scale of the challenge
Energy used to heat and power buildings in Merton makes up around 74% of the borough's greenhouse gas inventory
Our Climate Strategy and Action Plan considers actions which reduce emissions from our building stock, by reducing our energy demand and moving towards low carbon sources of energy.
Well over half of Merton's 88,000 homes are not yet efficient enough to make the necessary move away from natural gas central heating to low carbon alternatives.
To be net-zero carbon by 2050, all buildings must be energy efficient to reduce the amount of energy used.
This can be achieved through investing in loft, wall and floor insulation and replacing doors and windows. All homes, businesses and organisations must replace natural gas central heating and cooking with a low carbon alternative such as heat pumps and electric cookers.
What you can do
Step 1 - Take action to reduce energy use and emissions from your home or business
There are a wide range of things you can do to cut your energy use (as well as your energy bills!), from switching off appliances when you aren't using them, to turning your thermostat down a couple of degrees, or using energy efficient products like LEDs.
- Visit the Energy Saving Trust website for lots of tips on using less energy, including their solar energy calculator or Money Saving Expert’s Solar Panel Guide.
- Save on hot water by having shorter showers, putting a lid on the pan when cooking, and not overfilling the kettle – heating water is one of the most energy-intensive activities in our homes.
- Switch to a 100% green energy tariff or green energy provider – it may not cost you more than a standard tariff. London Power, founded by the Mayor of London, offers competitive green energy tariffs.
- Retrofit your home/ business to make it more energy efficient – visit the Simple Energy Advice website and check out EcoFurb's Plan Builder to find out how.
- Invest in low carbon heating or renewable energy for your home/ business – visit the Find Ways to Save Energy In Your Home website to find out what technologies might work for you.
Step 2 - Find out what funding is available
- Green Homes Grants Funding - Homeowners and residential landlords may be eligible for funding towards the cost of installing energy efficiency improvements and low carbon technologies.
- Smart Export Guarantee – you may be eligible for payments for any renewable electricity that you generate that is put into the grid.
- Boiler Upgrade Scheme - Running until 2025, the Boiler Upgrade Scheme (BUS) is a UK Government initiative to encourage more people in England and Wales to install low carbon heating systems. It is open to homeowners, as well as owners of small business properties.
Step 3 - Get involved in our Climate Action Group
The Buildings and Energy sub-group will be looking at how we can develop projects to reduce emissions from homes, businesses and other organisations.
If you're interested in developing a community energy project, you may be able to access funding from the Mayor's Community Energy Fund.
Step 4 - Spread the word
In order to become a net-zero carbon borough, everyone working or living in Merton is going to need to play their part. You can help spread the word to get your friends, family and co-workers thinking about how they can reduce their energy use and emissions from their homes or work places.
What we will do
- Encourage homeowners, landlords, businesses and organisations to make their homes and premises more energy efficient and low carbon via our climate communications.
- Support initiatives which help the able-to-pay to make their homes more energy efficient and maximise low carbon and renewable energy such as
- Ensure that new development in Merton is fit for the future through our Local Plan See what our draft Climate Change policies are looking to achieve.
- Engage with local housing providers to drive domestic retrofit in Merton's social housing stock.
- Access national funding to support fuel poor households – From May 2022, through to March 2023 we have been encouraging residents to sign up for the Mayor’s Warmer Homes Programme, for residents to apply for grants of between £5000 and £25,000 to upgrade the energy efficiency of their homes
- Ensure that all major Council regeneration schemes and developments are in keeping with our carbon reduction target where possible.
- Identify any funding and skills gaps which must be filled in order to decarbonise Merton's building stock and lobby national government.
- Develop an energy masterplan for the borough to support the transition in energy use.
Delivering Net Zero – An evidence study to support planning policies which deliver Net Zero Carbon developments (May 2023)
Following the adoption of Part L 2021 of Building Regulations on 15th June 2022, as part of a consortium of 18 London boroughs, we commissioned a team of consultants to review the evidence for our energy and carbon planning policy targets in light of changes to Part L. The Delivering Net Zero report (2023) below sets out the findings of this review which support planning policies that deliver Net Zero Carbon developments. This study forms part of the updated evidence base for Merton’s draft Local Plan.
- Delivering Net Zero – Main report
- Delivering Net Zero – 20-minute summary
- Delivering Net Zero – Executive summary
Decentralised energy networks
Decentralised energy is produced close to where it will be used and distributed by a network of underground pipes.
In 2016, we appointed consultants AECOM to investigate the opportunity for delivering district heat networks in Merton. This work was funded by a grant from the Government's Heat Networks Delivery Unit (HNDU) and was completed over two phases. The first phase of local heat mapping and energy masterplanning was completed in January 2017 and the Network Development and Financial Modelling was completed in February 2018. The executive summaries and full reports are available for download.
- Heat mapping and energy masterplanning - summary
- Heat mapping and energy masterplanning - full report
- Network Development and Financial Modelling – summary
- Network Development and Financial Modelling – full report