London bids to be world's greenest by 2012: mayor

May 18, 2009
Mayor Boris Johnson, seen here, outlined plans to make London "the cleanest, greenest city on earth" by the 2012 Olympics and called for commitments from other world cities at a climate change conference

Mayor Boris Johnson outlined plans to make London "the cleanest, greenest city on earth" by the 2012 Olympics and called for commitments from other world cities at a climate change conference.

Leaders of the world's 40 largest cities, plus 17 affiliate municipalities, are meeting in Seoul this week for a summit on combating global warming -- the third to be held since 2005.

"What we should do in Seoul is agree that we will stop the endless addiction of mankind to the internal combustion engine," said Johnson.

He told a press conference the world's cities consume 75 percent of its energy and produce 80 percent of the emissions which cause .

"The problem of our planet is an urban problem," Johnson said, calling for "serious results" in Seoul.

"I don't want to walk away with a communique which contains nothing but warm words and hot air... it's important we agree some specific measures."

He said the British capital wants to use the Olympics "to drive the greening and the improvement of our city" and noted that is committed to reduce carbon emissions by 60 percent by 2025.

Johnson said the key measure was addressing the problems relating to domestic and commercial buildings, which accounted for 70 percent of in London.

This involved retrofitting -- installing lagging -- in large numbers of public buildings.

Johnson proclaimed himself a "passionate cyclist" and said he would push ahead with cycle super-highways around London.

He also called for "real progress" by cities worldwide towards the electrification of municipal fleets and other vehicles. "That's one of the things we are hoping to achieve in Seoul."

London's problem, he said, was caused by from 8,300 antiquated diesel buses which could be replaced by low-carbon vehicles.

There were also 32,000 taxis running on diesel fuel which could be replaced by .

Johnson said there would be a substantial programme in the next few years to produce a "cleaner, greener" bus for his city. "The age of the diesel-emitting bus has got to be over in London."

(c) 2009 AFP

Explore further: US delays decision on Keystone pipeline project

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

EPA enters partnership with BorgWarner

Apr 18, 2006

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency says it has formed a partnership with BorgWarner to develop cleaner, more fuel efficient engines and vehicles.

Reducing CO2 through technology and smart growth

Feb 11, 2009

A Georgia Tech City and Regional Planning study on climate change, published February 10, 2009 online by Environmental Science and Technology, shows that "smart growth" combined with the use of hybrid vehicl ...

Hybrid Bus in the City: A Prototype with a Future

Aug 20, 2007

Nuremberg’s public transport system has become more "electrified" thanks to a diesel-electric hybrid bus developed by MAN. The vehicle is equipped with drive-system technology from Siemens.

Recommended for you

US delays decision on Keystone pipeline project

Apr 18, 2014

The United States announced Friday a fresh delay on a final decision regarding a controversial Canada to US oil pipeline, saying more time was needed to carry out a review.

New research on Earth's carbon budget

Apr 18, 2014

(Phys.org) —Results from a research project involving scientists from the Desert Research Institute have generated new findings surrounding some of the unknowns of changes in climate and the degree to which ...

User comments : 0

More news stories

China says massive area of its soil polluted

A huge area of China's soil covering more than twice the size of Spain is estimated to be polluted, the government said Thursday, announcing findings of a survey previously kept secret.

UN weather agency warns of 'El Nino' this year

The UN weather agency Tuesday warned there was a good chance of an "El Nino" climate phenomenon in the Pacific Ocean this year, bringing droughts and heavy rainfall to the rest of the world.

Making graphene in your kitchen

Graphene has been touted as a wonder material—the world's thinnest substance, but super-strong. Now scientists say it is so easy to make you could produce some in your kitchen.

Low tolerance for pain? The reason may be in your genes

Researchers may have identified key genes linked to why some people have a higher tolerance for pain than others, according to a study released today that will be presented at the American Academy of Neurology's 66th Annual ...