London for cleantech

People sitting down in a park
London, the world’s first National Park City, is committed to being greener, cleaner and ready for the future. Here are five ways it’s a centre for cleantech.

1. A bold strategy

The Mayor of London has set out an ambitious mission for the capital to become a zero-carbon, zero-pollution city by 2030 and a zero-waste city by 2050. His Green New Deal focuses on decarbonising London’s transport and buildings, and doubling the size of its green economy.

The mayor’s vision is backed up by clear strategies, targets, infrastructure and finance, including a transport strategy to achieve 80% of journeys as walking, cycling or public transport by 2041, paving the way for the best air quality of any major city in the world.

2. Access to capital

London’s ecosystem of not only finance and professional services, but academic, engineering, pharmaceutical and cultural sectors, make it a dynamic centre for green investment. London is a global leader in green finance and the second biggest source of investment funds for cleantech in the world, after New York.[1]

2020 was an impressive year for cleantech investment, with 36 deals and £560m of funding.[2] In London, businesses can access a range of VC investors, such as MMC Ventures, IP Group and Ecomachines Ventures, as well as a myriad of government funding, from the Clean Growth Fund to the Greater London Investment Fund.

3. A place where talent thrives

London is where world-leading expertise in technology, engineering, energy, finance, legal and environmental research all converge. Two of the world’s top 50 universities for engineering and technology are in London – UCL and Imperial College London – and the city boasts more software developers than many large European countries.[3]

World-class research is accessible at faculties such as the Energy Futures Lab and The Centre for Transport Studies at Imperial, and The Bartlett and the Circular Economy Lab at UCL.

London is a global hotspot for cleantech innovation – innovation that addresses the causes and effects of man-made climate change.
Professor Richard Templer
Imperial College London

4. Innovative infrastructure

London is investing heavily in greening its building and transport infrastructure. The city now has more than 7,700 EV chargepoints, more than 30% of the UK market share.[4] All new London buses will be zero emission, with a commitment to deliver a 100% zero-emission bus fleet in London by 2034.

To improve air quality, the Mayor of London is expanding the Ultra Low Emission Zone (ULEZ), requiring vehicles to meet tighter exhaust emission standards or pay a daily charge. The ULEZ has already contributed to a 44% reduction in roadside CO2.[5]

The London Plan 2021 requires new buildings to be constructed to zero-carbon standards and larger schemes to be developed in line with circular economy principles.

5. A collaborative ecosystem

Bringing together inspirational events, such as London Climate Action Week and the ClimateTech summit, vibrant networks and access to dedicated business support for entrepreneurs, London is the perfect place to grow your cleantech business.

Imperial College London has launched the Centre for Climate Change Innovation, which aims to accelerate innovative solutions to tackle the climate crisis, while London-based Sustainable Ventures has created Europe’s largest startup ecosystem in the cleantech and sustainability sector.

Logo for SME Climate Hub

Use the filters in the map to discover the city's ecosystem. See the full list featured on the map [PDF].

London going green: a sustainability guide for businesses

Learn what London is doing to go green, from good practices and opportunities for businesses to becoming more sustainable in areas such as buildings, transport, waste and digital infrastructure. [PDF 7.7 MB]
Image of City of London skyscrapers during sunset

Five years on: global investment trends in climate tech since the Paris Agreement

Discover which cities are attracting the most climate tech venture capital investment. [PDF 6.7 MB]

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