London mayor Boris Johnson has launched a fund of more than £70m aimed at financing new small-scale waste infrastructure in the capital.
Known as the Foresight Environment Fund (FEF), which will operate as part of the London Green Fund, the FEF has received £35m from the Green Fund itself, which fund manager Foresight Group have doubled. In total, Foresight hope to leverage more than £200m from private sector investors for the fund.
The London Green Fund is a £100m holding fund, managed by the European Investment Bank, which has been contributed to by the London Development Agency, the London Waste and Recycling Board and the European Regional Development Fund.
Speaking at the launch of the FEF, Foresight Group partner Matt Taylor said: “When you think about waste, you don’t come to London first – yet. But that is why we are working on this programme, because while the actuality is not yet there, the vision and possibility certainly are.
“When we think about waste regulation changes, perhaps not coming first can be a great advantage to getting it right.”
Johnson said: “London’s existing lead as a low-carbon financial centre means we are well placed to grab more than our fair share of the global market in associated goods, services and skills. This multi-million pound fund to provide greener waste and recycling facilities is a great example of the type of innovative thinking that will stimulate low-carbon economic growth for the capital.”
It is thought the FEF’s investment in infrastructure could generate 100 jobs and divert 245,000 tonnes of waste from landfill.
The announcement was welcomed by Institution of Civil Engineers London expert Nigel Mattravers, he said: “This fund will play a vital part in delivering the Mayor’s ambitions for waste management in London, making it easier to progress projects which can offer a good return on investment. As it is a fund which is focussed on waste and resource management it should be able to support projects that would struggle in the general investment market.”