Hackney's pioneering eco network is 'inspirational' says top UK environmentalist
A pioneering green project spearheaded by Hackney Council has been hailed as “inspirational” by one of the country’s leading eco thinkers.
Hackney Council has joined forces with Islington and Towers Hamlets councils to help businesses save money, reduce pollutants and improve staff health as part of the launch of the expanded Zero Emissions Network (ZEN).
The councils are offering a series of exclusive cash-saving deals, and unique access to free advice and services from travel, energy and green experts to traders in and around the highly-polluted Tech City area.
The network launched on Thursday, 9 October at BL-NK, Shoreditch, where non-ZEN members got the chance to meet and discuss the project with those who have already joined up, as well as check-out clean e-vehicles.
Leading British environmentalist and Guardian columnist Tony Juniper said: “The expansion of the Zero Emissions Network is to be warmly welcomed. Progress already made in engaging businesses to protect the air we breathe is already delivering results and demonstrates how through sensible and practical steps we can tackle even what appear to be intractable problems.
“The evening marking the expansion of the network was highly inspirational and a great reminder of the huge power that comes from bringing people together and sharing best practice.”
We all need to work together to try and make Shoreditch a cleaner and more pleasant place to work and live. I would urge businesses in the area to get involved in the groundbreaking ZEN project for free advice and exclusive offers. The benefits speak for themselves: better air, a healthier workforce and real cost savings.
The launch night, along with an event in Hoxton Square earlier in the day, marked the end of the recruitment phase in which 250 businesses signed up, including 185 from Hackney.
The next phase of the project will see the councils working with the businesses to implement the measures they are offering, including:
- Free business membership and to Zipcar/City Car Club worth £160
- Free trial of electric cars and vans
- Free half days bike maintenance session
- Free trial of cargo bikes
- Free energy audit to help reduce energy and save money
- Advice on how to apply for green grants
- Reduced electric vehicle taxi fares
Cllr Claudia Webbe, Islington Council’s executive member for environment and transport said: “Working with other inner London boroughs such as Hackney and Tower Hamlets means we can work together to help businesses take the steps they need to reduce emissions and improve the air we breathe.”
Hackney established the ZEN project last year with the aim of reducing pollution in the Shoreditch area and it is now widened to include neighbouring Islington and Tower Hamlets councils.
To learn more about ZEN:
Call: 020 8356 6113