A Message from UKPN about Electricity Supply in Carshalton Central

Many local councillors have received this message today, 14th November….

“Dear Cllr Pollock,

UK Power Networks delivers the electricity to homes and businesses across London, including your ward of Carshalton Central, and it’s our job to make sure that the lights stay on. 

Since 2010 we have reduced the frequency of power cuts by 42%, however we recognise that while power cuts are less frequent, when they do still occur they can be very worrying, especially to older people, people with chronic medical conditions or parents of very young children.  That’s why we have set up a ‘Priority Services Register’ to enable us to identify vulnerable people quickly in the event of a power cut and get them the help they need.

You can find more about our free Priority Service Register, including information about who is eligible to register at: ukpowernetworks.co.uk/internet/en/power-cuts/priority-services-during-a-power-cut/

This winter we are keen to increase the number of people who are registered for help so we can provide the support they need quicker in case of a power cut.  We are therefore asking for the help of local councillors to encourage constituents, who may be eligible for help, to join the Priority Services Register.

Do you or someone you know need extra help if there’s a power cut?

Join the Priority Services Register today ukpowernetworks.co.uk/prioritysupport

Although power cuts don’t happen very often when they do they can be worrying.  UK Power Networks is the electricity network for London and it provides a ‘Priority Services Register’ for people who might need extra help in a power cut.  Older people, families with very young children, and people with specific medical conditions are among the many people who are eligible to register for free support.  You can find more details and register by visiting ukpowernetworks.co.uk/prioritysupport or calling 0800 169 9970.

I hope you will help us to help your constituents get the support they need and please do send me a copy of your newsletter if you include information about the Register, so we can share it as an example of good practice.

In the meantime, if you would like any further information about the Register or about UK Power Networks please do not hesitate to contact me.

Best wishes

Peter Kocen

Public Affairs Manager

Tel: 020 7397 7710  Mob: 07812 262 504 Twitter: @UKPNnews

Sutton Council launches its low-carbon energy company for South London

 The Felnex development, artist's impression.

A Computer Generated Image of how the Felnex development will look.

Sutton Council is launching its own energy supply company that will use waste heat to provide low-carbon energy to thousands of homes and businesses across south London.

The  is calling on developers in Sutton, Merton and Croydon to join the Sutton Decentralised Energy Network (SDEN) which has the potential to provide sustainable heating and hot water to 19,000 homes at no greater cost than a conventional boiler.

Energy generated by the new Energy Recovery Facility and from the existing landfill in Beddington will provide low-carbon heating through a network of pipes that will serve developments, eliminating the need for households and businesses to have boilers. The project also has the potential to harness energy from other businesses, which is currently wasted.

Sutton is already in negotiations to sign up its first partner to join the network. Barratt Homes are developer for the Felnex site in Beddington, Sutton, which will contain 725 homes and a supermarket, both of which will be connected to the SDEN. That will save 900 tonnes of CO2 emissions with future phases expected to increase this to over 5,000 tonnes.

The council is setting up the SDEN to help reduce the borough’s carbon footprint as the UK’s first One Planet Borough – a status which means the council has made series of environmental commitments.

It will also invest profits back into public services to benefit Sutton residents, for example they could be used in measures to reduce fuel poverty.

The plans are backed by the Government and the Greater London Authority. The Department of Energy and Climate Change has also cited SDEN as a leading example of best practice.

Cllr Jayne McCoy, Chair of the Housing, Economy and Business Committee at Sutton Council, said:

“Sutton has long been committed to environmental sustainability and reducing our carbon footprint. We are now pushing the boundaries further by setting up the Sutton Decentralised Energy Network. The SDEN will offer developers in South London a sustainable alternative to fossil fuels for the provision of heat and hot water. There are lots of potential benefits including lower construction costs, lower green taxes, better resilience, no ongoing plant maintenance and increased lettable floor space. For Sutton, the SDEN will help to reduce our carbon footprint and any profits we make will be invested back into public services for our residents and businesses. At a time when our council budgets are being severely cut by the Government, it is projects like the SDEN can help local authorities to bring in much needed revenue while also creating a low-carbon borough.”

James Dunne, Operations Director at Barratt Homes, said: 

“The SDEN offers developers the chance to connect to a low-carbon energy supply when building new homes. Barratt already has a proven record in district heating. It is straightforward to build the infrastructure, significantly reduces emissions and it counters the rising price of fossil fuels over the long term. We are looking forward to working with the SDEN to supply our 725 home development in Sutton with low-carbon energy.”

How SDEN works

The council will be laying a network of highly insulated steel pipes to deliver hot water to our customers.

The amount of heat energy taken from our network is controlled by users – exactly the same as a heating or hot water system fed from a boiler located in a building.

Inside the property, the method used to deliver heating can remain the same, such as radiators and underfloor heating

Benefits can include:

  • Reduction in construction costs
  • Increased lettable floor area in developments due to reduced plant space
  • Enables developers to meet planning regulations more easily and cheaply
  • Reduced exposure to green/carbon taxes and levies
  • Avoids ongoing heating plant maintenance, servicing and replacement
  • Better resilience than conventional heat supplies
  • Participation in a scheme that will deliver significant carbon savings to South London
  • Profits can be reinvested in public services in Sutton

Developers interested in finding out more about the network should call Sutton Council on 020 8770 5918  or email opportunitysutton@sutton.gov.uk


Lib Dem run Sutton Council reaffirms its green credentials

Sutton Council has set out an updated strategy for delivery of its One Planet Sutton ambitions, reaffirming its commitment to being a greener borough in partnership with organisations across the borough.

At the Environment and Neighbourhoods Committee meeting on Thursday 18th June the council agreed to keep the five One Planet Sutton themes aimed at reducing the borough’s carbon footprint. The five themes are:

  • Cutting carbon emissions
  • Cutting waste
  • Valuing our natural environment
  • Supporting healthy communities, and
  • Supporting the local economy.

These five themes are embedded in everything the council does, from targeting its work on community energy schemes, the growing of local food, and sustainable transport by encouraging walking, cycling and use of public transport.  The council will continue to undertake work across all of the One Planet themes to reduce carbon emissions. By targeting resources on deliverable projects within each of the five themes Sutton Council can re-endorse its vision for the borough to be London’s most-sustainable suburb.

Over the past four years, more than £8.5m of funding has been levered into the borough to help deliver projects contributing to its One Planet Sutton targets, and the council has made over £1.9m savings from council energy usage. The council has been monitoring targets annually relating to borough-wide energy reduction, waste, local food, transport, flooding and water reduction.  The council estimates the direct financial savings of the service review will be £84,700 from the 2014/15 budget.  Benchmarking of Sutton’s performance by the charity Bioregional confirms that Sutton is ranked the highest outer London borough and the third-highest London council overall in terms of having the lowest CO2 emissions.

Cllr. Jill Whitehead

Cllr. Jill Whitehead

Cllr Jill Whitehead, Chair of the Environment and Neighbourhood Committee, said:

“Sutton is committed to delivering a borough where residents have an excellent quality of life, and where our natural resources and wildlife are preserved for future generations.  Our revised sustainability strategy will allow the council to focus limited resources where we can provide best value. This includes increased partnership working on projects such as community-owned solar schemes and community-led behaviour change programmes.”

Sian Cooke, Senior Project Officer at Bioregional, said:

“We’re delighted to be working with Sutton Council on its refocused sustainability strategy in order to really push Sutton’s aspirations and achieve even more. Our focus will be to help local people benefit by saving money on their energy bills as well as lowering the borough’s carbon emissions. We’re also working with Volunteer Centre Sutton to find practical ways for Sutton’s volunteers to apply sustainability in their placements and bring One Planet Sutton to new audiences.”

Local school children become energy experts, thanks to council and charity group project

The winning entry.

Ella Rollings, age 11, of High View Primary School in Wallington, can now call herself an expert in energy efficiency.

The enthusiastic year six student was awarded last week for her creative poster promoting the merits of being more energy conscious. Her poster will be on display around the borough.

Her school was one of ten in the borough to take part in the Schools Energy Project, which saw Sutton Council team up with local charity EcoLocal to better educate them about saving energy and reducing fuel bills. It also aimed to help students become more energy-savvy.

As well as the poster competition, the programme saw each school have an informative assembly and lesson. The EcoLocal Energy Doctor made the whole affair fun for the children, who also received homework packs to help them work with their parents or carers to waste less energy in their own homes.

The schools involved in the programme, which was free to them and ran from December last year to this March, included: Beddington Park Primary; Brookfield Primary; Culvers House Primary; Devonshire Primary; Foresters Primary; Green Wrythe Primary; Holy Trinity CofE Junior; Tweeddale Primary and Overton Grange School, as well as High View.

Mary Morrissey, Sutton Council’s Strategic Director of Environment, Housing and Regeneration Services, said:

“I am delighted that our younger residents are getting on board to help us achieve our One Planet Sutton targets. Protecting our environment is key and it is fantastic that our schools agree.”

“Well done Ella and all the students involved in the programme. Your poster is fantastic.”

View the story and more pictures online: http://www.newsroomsutton.co.uk/ 

Sutton Council seeks residents’ feedback on local advice services

sutton_council_logoSutton Council has launched a new survey asking residents how they would prefer to access information and advice about issues they face in Sutton such as finding out if they are eligible for social housing, what childcare services are available locally, and who can help if they are caring for an elderly relative.

The survey is part of a review of information and advice services in the borough which includes looking at services commissioned by Sutton Council in the voluntary and community sectors as well as reviewing the council’s own services. The poll is being carried out through the council’s online residents’ panel which has around 1,000 members, and it asks residents where they tend to turn for advice and what they expect from information providers.

Those who are not members of the online panel can tell the council what they think by visiting www.sutton.gov.uk/consultations.

Councillor Simon Wales, Sutton Council’s Lead Member for Finance, Assets and the Voluntary Sector, said: “We want to ensure that all residents can access information and advice when they need to and in ways that suit them. Whether it’s advice about dealing with debt, finding social housing or accessing healthcare, it’s important that residents know where to go and that they are given the support they need. I hope that as many residents as possible will take part in this survey and give us their feedback so that we can improve the services provided by both the council and our partners.”

Green energy from oil recycling in Sutton could make half a million cups of tea

imagesCAJJ7KVHRecycling firm Living Fuels has congratulated Sutton residents for preventing 1,600 litres of cooking oil from going to landfill last year, saving 1,500 tonnes of carbon dioxide emissions. This equates to enough clean green energy to make 500,000 cups of tea.

Following on from this success, Sutton Council is encouraging more residents to recycle used cooking oil. Residents can drop off unwanted solidified or liquid cooking oil in a plastic container at Kimpton Park Way Reuse and Recycling Centre on Kimpton Park Way, Sutton.

Living Fuels Ltd, part of REG Bio-Power, recovers the used cooking oil into an environmentally friendly bioliquid which is used to generate carbon neutral electricity for UK homes and businesses.

This achievement by Sutton residents contributes to the council’s ‘One Planet Sutton’ target to be a carbon neutral borough by 2025. The council’s ‘One Planet Sutton’ Plan aims to give residents a better quality of life and boost the local economy while radically reducing the borough’s negative impact on the environment.

Recycling oil is not just good for the planet – it also saves money.

When used hot oil is put down sinks it cools and solidifies onto the sides of pipes and causes blockages. An average of £15 million is spent each year clearing drain and pipe blockages around the country which, if left, could lead to waste – including raw sewage – backing up into homes and businesses.

Less clean ups would mean water companies have more money to spend on new advancements in water treatment, more pipes could be laid and more money could go into flood prevention – the possibilities are endless.

Cllr Jill Whitehead, Chair of Sutton Council’s Environment and Neighbourhoods Committee, said:

“It’s great that more and more residents are using this service each year.  However we’d really like to encourage even more people to be greener and to recycle their used cooking oil so that we can make an even bigger difference.

“Recycling oil means that less waste goes to landfill, which reduces our landfill tax and saves the council money that could be put into other services. It also reduces our CO2 emissions, helps to prevent climate change and reduces our reliance on fossil fuels. This, along with the other initiatives we have launched, will help us meet our target of being a zero carbon borough by 2025.”

Rob Murphy, Operation Director of REG Bio-Power said:

“Although the UK is still struggling with its carbon reduction commitments, it’s always nice to reflect on the positive aspects of renewable energy over the past 12 months, especially as the London Borough of Sutton has made a beneficial impact. We offer you many thanks for your efforts.”

Winter weather guidance for individuals


A. General winter preparedness

  • Guidance on staying healthy this winter is available from the NHS by clicking here.
  • If you are receiving health services or social care, ask your GP, key worker or other contact about staying healthy in winter and the services available to you. Make sure you have a list of emergency numbers if you need to call for assistance or advice during cold weather.
  • Get a flu jab if you are in a risk group. Anyone in a high risk group should have been contacted by their GP to arrange vaccination. You can check if you may be in a high risk group and what to do by clicking here.
  • Give up smoking – this would improve circulation and reduce the risk of heart attack.
  • You can check your entitlement to benefits and tax credits by clicking here.
  • Find energy grants and help with heating costs by clicking here.
  • Check that your heating is working properly. Check room temperatures – especially those rooms where disabled or vulnerable people spend most of their time. If you or someone else is likely to be restricted to one room during the winter period or during a cold spell make sure that it can be kept at or above recommended temperatures and that you plan what resources you / they need to keep them safe and warm.
  • Make sure that you have access to sufficient fuel supplies for the winter period, especially if you rely on deliveries of oil or solid fuel. Consider alternative heating measures if required.
  • Protect water pipes from freezing by insulating them. Draught-proof around windows or doors. Avoid blocking ventilation points in the home. Fit an audible carbon monoxide alarm that is EN50291 compliant.
  • Look out for vulnerable neighbours and help them prepare for winter. Consider other preventive action you can take, perhaps volunteering to help the community.

B. What to do when severe winter weather is forecast

  • Monitor the weather forecast. Ensure you are stocked with food and medications in advance.
  • Take the weather into account when planning your activity over the following days. Avoid exposing yourself to cold or icy outdoor conditions if you are at a higher risk of cold-related illness or falls.
  • Check room temperatures – especially those rooms where disabled or vulnerable people spend most of their time.
  • Maintain regular contact with vulnerable people and neighbours you know to be at risk in cold weather.
  • Discuss with friends and neighbours about clearing snow and ice from the front of your house and public walkways nearby.

C. Responding to severe winter weather

  • Continue to monitor the weather forecast.
  • Check and maintain daytime room temperature at 21°C. Check bedroom night-time temperature and maintain it at 18°C or warmer.
  • If you have to go out, make sure you dress warmly and wear non-slip shoes. Also tell someone where you are going and let them know when you get back. If you have a mobile phone, keep it charged and on you at all times.
  • Dress warmly, eat warm food and take warm drinks regularly.
  • Check on those you know are at risk.
  • If you are seriously concerned about your own health or that of others, alert the emergency services. If it is not a 999 (life threatening) emergency, you should call the NHS on 111, a free to call number (mobiles and landlines). The 111 service provides initial assessment and directs people to the right local service.
  • Clear pavements of ice or snow if you are able to do so safely. Essential guidance is available by clicking here.

Want to lower your Electricity & Gas Bills?

The London Borough of Sutton is supporting a scheme to help Londoners get a better deal on their gas and electricity bills. The Big London Energy Switch is a collective switching scheme being run by the council in partnership with 19 other London Boroughs.

The scheme aims to gather a large number of people together who all want to lower their gas and electricity bills. We will be using a third party switching provider to encourage energy companies to offer their lowest price.

Registration is open online at www.biglondonenergyswitch.org.uk and closes on 8 April 2013. Once registration has closed, the energy companies will all be invited to offer their best prices to everyone who has registered.

Those who register will then receive details of their personalised offer and how much money they could potentially save by switching. Please note, if you choose to register, you are not bound to accept any offer and can choose to either accept or decline the offer you receive.

Anyone who pays a household energy bill can take part, although if you are in debt to an energy company you may not be allowed to switch. A similar scheme recently saw annual savings between £60-200 per household.

For more information, please go to www.biglondonenergyswitch.org.uk or www.sutton.gov.uk/energyswitch. The easiest way to register is online, however if you do not have access to the intranet or an email address please call 020 8770 5070.

This scheme is open to everyone so please do encourage your family and friends to sign up too!