The UK water industry has been granted a loan to go towards the Thames Tideway Tunnel. The European Investment Bank will provide £700 million to go towards the “super sewer”. The Thames Tideway Tunnel is the biggest infrastructure project ever undertaken by the UK water industry and once complete, will help combat the surplus of untreated sewage that flows into the Thames.
The European Investment Bank (EIB) is the world’s largest lender for water-related investment and the backing for the Thames Tideway Tunnel represents the largest-ever loan for water investment worldwide. The 35-year long-term loan from Europe’s long-term lending institution has been agreed with Tideway, the new regulated company set up to design, build, commission and maintain the 25 km tunnel, which will directly control or intercept discharges from more than 30 combined sewer overflow points, stretching from Acton in the west to Stratford in the east.
Jonathan Taylor, Vice President of European Investment Bank, said: “The new £700 million loan for Tideway represents the European Investment Bank’s largest-ever water loan and the most significant support for UK infrastructure since Crossrail.
“This demonstrates the EIB’s strong commitment as the largest source of financing for long-term investment in UK water infrastructure since before privatisation and builds on more than £2 billion of support for investment to improve London’s water and waste water infrastructure since 1989.
“We are pleased to support the construction of the Thames Tideway Tunnel, a world-class engineering scheme, delivering infrastructure vital to clean up the Thames.”
Mark Corben, Chief Financial Officer of Thames Tideway Tunnel said: “The EIB’s backing for Tideway is an important vote of confidence in us as a company, as we move into the construction phase. This loan covers a significant proportion of the financing we need to raise. The innovative, index-linked structure enables us to lock-in financing costs, whilst also matching our funding requirements and profiling debt service, in line with the expected growth in our asset base.”
The Thames Tideway Tunnel will be 25km long, with the main tunnel’s outer diameter measuring 7.2 metres. It will have a storage volume of 1.24 million cubic metres and run up to 66 metres beneath London. Joining up with the Lee Tunnel, it will control, temporarily store and transfer, the excess sewage to Beckton for treatment. In addition to the main tunnel, there will be several connection tunnels.
Rory Stewart MP, Environment Minister, said: “The Thames Tideway Tunnel is a really impressive project. It will improve the quality of the water in the Thames – benefitting fish and wildlife – and all the people along its banks. It will prevent millions of tonnes of sewage flowing into the water.
“It is also an excellent example of investment in the UK’s water sector, supported by financing from institutions such as the European Investment Bank: good value for customers, creating jobs and making the long term infrastructure decisions necessary to protect this great city and our natural environment in the century ahead.”
The European Investment Bank is the world’s largest international public bank and is 16 per cent owned by the UK government. The European Investment Bank has provided more than £12.6 billion for investment in water and waste water infrastructure across the UK including expanding reservoirs, reducing leaks and protecting against flooding.
Lending by the EIB in the UK last year totalled £5.6 billion and supported long-term investment in 40 projects across the country. This represented the largest annual engagement since the start of EIB lending in the UK in 1973, which has supported nearly £16 billion of overall investment.
In the last ten years the European Investment Bank has provided nearly £8 billion for direct investment in London, with additional investment from UK wide programmes.
4 Common Items That Can be Reused Again and Again
As a society we are getting much better at taking our obligations to the world and environment around us more seriously. This is undoubtedly a good thing! The effects of climate change are beginning to manifest across the world, and this is turning the issue from an abstract threat into a very real danger. Trying to introduce some greener, more eco-friendly practices into your life isn’t just a great way of doing something beneficial for society and the world around you. It is a wonderful way of engaging positively with the world and carries with it numerous psychological benefits.
Being a greener, more ecologically friendly person doesn’t require any dramatic life changes. Breaking or making a few small habits is all it takes to make your life a greener one. In this article we look at one of the easiest, yet most effective green practices to get into: reusing everyday items.
Jars and Containers
Glass and metal are widely recycled, and recycling is a good thing! However, consider whether any containers you buy, whether it’s a tub of ice cream or a jar of coffee, can be washed out and reused for something else. Mason jars, for example, can be used to store homemade pasta sauce and can be washed for future use. Once you start thinking about it, you will find endless opportunities to reuse your old containers.
An ice-cold soda is a wonderful treat on a hot day, but buying soda can get expensive, and the manufacturing and distribution of the drinks themselves isn’t great for the environment. However, by holding on to your old soda bottles and repurposing them as water bottles, you can save money on drinks, or use them to measure out water for your garden.
Most of the time groceries come in paper bags, which are better for the environment than the plastic alternatives, but they are less durable and thus harder to reuse. Whenever the store places your items in a plastic bag, hang onto it so you can reuse the bags again. If you want to take it one step further, consider looking into buying some personalized recycled bags. These bags are designed to last for a long time and are made of recycled materials. They look striking and unique, they’ll turn heads, and maybe even attitudes!
If you’re a keen gardener, then you will already probably know how to reseed your plants in order to ensure a fresh crop after each plant’s lifecycle. If you have space in your garden, or haven’t yet tried your hand at gardening, then consider planting a small vegetable plot. Growing your own veggies means that you’ll be helping to cut back on the emissions generated by their transport and production. The best part about growing your own food in this way is that, by harvesting properly and saving the seeds, you can be set up with fresh vegetables for life!
Reusing and recycling common household items is an easy way to make your world a little bit greener. Once you start looking for these opportunities you’ll realize that they’re everywhere!
These 5 Green Office Mistakes Are Costing You Money
The sudden interest in green business is very encouraging. According to recent reports, 42% of all companies have rated sustainability as an important element of their business. Unfortunately, the focus on sustainability will only last if companies can find ways to use it to boost their ROI.
Many businesses get so caught up in being socially conscious that they hope the financial aspect of it takes care of itself. The good news is that there are plenty of ways to go green and boost your net income at the same time.
Here are some important mistakes that you will want to avoid.
Only implementing sustainability on micro-scale
The biggest reason that brands are going green is to improve their optics with their customers. Too many businesses are making very minor changes, such as processing paperwork online and calling themselves green.
Customers have become wary of these types of companies. If you want to earn their business, you are going to need to go all the way. Bring in a green business consultant and make every feasible change to demonstrate that you are a green organization from top to bottom.
Not prioritizing investments by long-term ROI
It isn’t realistic to build an entirely green organization overnight. You will need to allocate your capital wisely.
Before investing in any green assets or services, you should always conduct a long-term cost benefit analysis. The initial investment for some green services may be over $20,000. If they don’t shave your cost by at least $3,000 a year, they probably aren’t worth the investment.
Determine which green investments will have the best pay off over the next 10 years. Make these investments before anything else. Then compare your options within each of those categories.
Implementing green changes without a plan
Effective, long-term planning is the key to business success. This principle needs to be applied to green organizations as well.
Before implementing a green strategy, you must answer the following questions:
- How will I communicate my green business philosophy to my customers?
- How will running a green business affect my revenue stream?
- How will adopting green business strategies change my monthly expenses? Will they increase or decrease them?
- How will my company finance green upgrades and other investments?
The biggest mistake that too many green businesses make is being overly optimistic with these forecasts. Take the time to collect objective data and make your decisions accordingly. This will help you run a much more profitable green business.
Not considering the benefits of green printing
Too many companies believe that going paperless is the only way to run a green organization. Unfortunately, going 100% paperless it’s not feasible for most companies.
Rather than aim for an unrealistic goal, consider the option of using a more environmentally friendly printer. It won’t be perfect, but it will be better than the alternative.
According to experts from Doranix, environmental printers have several benefits:
- They can process paper that has been completely recycled.
- They consume less energy than traditional printers.
- They use ink that is more environmentally friendly.
You want to take a look at different green printers and compare them. You’ll find that some will meet your needs as a green business.
Poorly communicating your green business strategy to customers
Brand positioning doesn’t happen on its own. If you want to run a successful green business, you must communicate your message to customers as clearly as possible. You must also avoid the appearance that you are patronizing them.
The best approach is to be clear when you were first making the change. I’ll make an announcement about your company‘s commitment to sustainability.
You also want to reinforce this message overtime by using green labels on all of your products. You don’t have to be blatant with your messaging at this stage. Simply provide a small, daily reminder on your products and invoices.
Finally, it is a good idea to participate in green business seminars and other events. If your community has a local Green Chamber of Commerce, you should consider joining as well.
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