GIB invests millions into major LED project

The UK’s largest ever fully-funded LED lighting retrofit programme has received a £17.5m from the Green Investment Bank (GIB) and Sustainable Development Capital Limited (SDCL).

The project, commissioned by Santander, involves the installation of 90,000 LED lamps in 800 of the finance group’s branches across the UK, with the SDCL-managed GIB investing £8.4m and encouraging a further £9.1m of private sector funding into the scheme.

The lighting solution, designed by GE Lighting, will cut greenhouse gas emissions by approximately 7,000 tonnes annually, the equivalent of removing 3,000 cars from the road, while also generate energy savings of more than 50% across the Santander estate.

Energy Secretary Amber Rudd welcomes the project. “We need research, innovation and serious private sector interest in clean energy technology to make real progress in transition to a global low carbon economy,” she said.

“The LED lighting retrofit project is a great example of steps that can be taken by companies to cut greenhouse gas emissions.”

Chris Richold, Director of Santander, emphasises that the company has been keen to demonstrate leadership in environmental sustainability and finance.

“There are fewer better ways show this leadership than to conduct and finance an energy efficiency upgrade throughout our entire UK estate. We look forward to working with SDCL and GE to help replicate similar solutions for our clients in the UK and around the world,” he commented.

The installation, which is scheduled for completion by the end of this year, will also extend to the bank’s 14 UK office buildings.

Ed Northam, Head of Investment Banking at the GIB, believes the project can have a major effect on bringing down power prices and demand.

“The relatively simple action of installing LED lighting can have a big impact on efforts to reduce the cost of electricity and cut energy demand while creating a better environment for customers, clients and employees,” he said.

“Santander has recognised this, and should be congratulated for sending a signal to corporate UK that energy efficiency makes good business sense.”

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