City Corporation on track to hit net zero by 2027

A new City of London Corporation report has revealed the organisation has slashed its net carbon emissions by 66% since 2018/19, leaving it on track to hit its key target to reach net-zero in its own operations by 2027.

The governing body of the Square Mile, which is also a major public services provider in London, cut emissions across its buildings including in the Barbican Centre, its historic Guildhall headquarters, the Guildhall School of Music and Drama, and the London Metropolitan Archives.

Lighting, ventilation, heating, cooling, humidification, and insulation were upgraded at the iconic London sites.

Through a pioneering £40 million Power Purchase Agreement with international energy provider Voltalia, the City Corporation buys all the electricity produced by a solar farm in Dorset, providing over half of its electricity, and saving over £3 million in energy costs per year.

The City Corporation’s radical Climate Action Strategy is powering this work, with the organisation aiming to become net zero across its investment and supply chain by 2040 - and to support the achievement of net zero for the whole Square Mile by the same year. This strategy and today’s report also includes the carbon emissions associated with City Bridge Foundation (CBF) activities and investments. CBF is an independent charity of which the City Corporation is the sole corporate Trustee. The Charity owns and maintains five of London’s bridges at no cost to the tax payer.

 Emissions from its financial investments have reduced by 25% over the last financial year, driven by carbon-cutting commitments from fund managers, with most now in the Net Zero Asset Initiative, which requires members to set their own net zero targets.

 The most significant reductions are in the City Corporation’s Pension Fund with a 30% decrease in emissions since 2021/22. 

 The organisation’s first-of-its-kind Climate Action Dashboard uses independently verified data and gives a transparent public account of its progress in reducing carbon emissions and increasing climate resilience.

 Since 2018, the City Corporation has been using 100% renewable electricity.

 The City Corporation has also been hailed as ‘A-List climate action leader’ by global environment charity Carbon Disclosure Project (CDP), receiving a top score on its climate action measures. 

 City of London Corporation Policy Chairman, Chris Hayward, said:

 “The climate crisis is the greatest challenge that we face.

 “2022 saw two significant UK milestones in temperature: the hottest day and the highest average on record. We also saw a significant increase in wildfires, resulting in the highest insurance claims from extreme weather since 2006. The global trend is also deeply concerning.

 “But together, the governing body of the Square Mile, and the UK’s financial and professional services sector are fighting back.

 “COP28 will see the first worldwide stocktake of climate action against the landmark Paris agreement – and although it is difficult, we must continue to push for urgent local and global action.

 “I urge all those within the Square Mile to work with us in partnership so that the City of London can continue to be ambitious in our goals and a world leader in climate action.”

The City Corporation manages 11,000 acres of green space in and around London which remove around 16,000 tonnes of carbon from the atmosphere a year, equivalent to 44% of emissions from its own operations.


Notes to Editors:

About City of London Corporation:

The City of London Corporation is the governing body of the Square Mile dedicated to a vibrant and thriving City, supporting a diverse and sustainable London within a globally-successful UK.