Switched on London – why we need Energy for Londoners

Sadiq Khan has committed to creating a public energy company for Londoners, and we now need to make sure he keeps his promise.

Switched on London has been campaigning for a not-for-profit Energy for Londoners (EfL) that will transform London’s energy sector and ensure affordable energy across the city. Given the monopoly of the Big6 and the public’s distrust of these companies, EfL would be a welcome and viable alternative. We want it to be run by Londoners, for Londoners, while in the process tackling fuel poverty and climate change.

Switched on London urges the Mayor to prioritise these three key issues when planning for EfL:

 

  1. Fuel Poverty

Since 2003, 12-15% of London households experience fuel poverty, and the situation is set to worsen. Urgent reform is needed, and EfL could provide the means to do this.

As a not-for profit, EfL would be able to offer cheaper tariffs to Londoners than the average market rate, and prepayment meter users would pay the same as direct debit customers.

Some of the profit generated by EfL would then be reinvested in household energy efficiency to continue to ensure fuel poverty is addressed in long-term measures.

An alternative company model would mean EfL could not sustain the cheaper tariffs as profits would have to be shared, and therefore could not be reinvested effectively into energy-saving measures and clean energy.

 

  1. Clean Energy

Sadiq Khan has committed to 100% clean energy by 2050, and this can be achieved through EfL.

As EfL would be a not-for-profit company, profits made can be reinvested in renewable energy technology to help London achieve this goal. This would include increasing London’s solar PV capacity and investing in offshore wind.

With this profit EfL can also invest in community energy projects that have been underfunded in the past.

 

  1. Democracy

Making sure that the company is democratic and accountable to Londoners will mean that residents can receive the best prices and ensure that profits are reinvested to good use.

What would this look like?

  • the governing body would comprise of one-third elected Londoners, one-third industry workers, and one-third local government representatives
  • the board of representatives would include at least 50% of women and a proportionate ethnic mix
  • annual assemblies across the city and a digital forum would encourage discussion and critique
  • transparency of all documents and business strategies so that users have confidence in EfL

 

London needs an energy company that serves the needs of its population, and can effectively challenge fuel poverty and climate change.

This can only be done effectively through a fully licensed company, which will mean all decision-making power rests in EfL. Any other company format would result in decision-making and profits being shared with a private company, but Switched on London wants to ensure that Londoners’ needs are centre stage.

This would ensure London becomes a global leader in green energy and would foster a sense of local pride and commitment to tackling climate change.

Please join our campaign to push Sadiq Khan to make a decision on EfL that will benefit all Londoners in the long and short term. The only way to do this is to create a fully licensed company within the next two years that prioritises the need to end fuel poverty and invest in green energy through democratic management.

Tweet @MayorofLondon to get Sadiq Khan’s attention.

Read more about Switched on London’s proposals here.

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