By Maximilian Clarke

Retrofitting London’s business premises with energy saving measures will provide jobs for thousands of unemployed, as well as saving the capital’s businesses up to £1 billion, Mayor Boris Johnson has said.

Speaking at the CBI London Annual Dinner, the Mayor laid out the economic and environmental opportunities for private sector businesses if they commit to retrofitting their premises and invest in retrofitting goods and services.

In London, 133,000 16 to 24 year olds are not working, training or studying and 75,000 young people are actively seeking work (excluding full-time students). If every eligible home in the capital took up the government's Green Deal retrofit offer the extra demand would make a real impact and create tens of thousands of new jobs to the sector. Based on this the Mayor believes that if every one of London's businesses and public organisations followed suit in proactively retrofitting their premises it could significantly impact upon youth unemployment altogether in the city.

The estimated likely economic value for London by 2025 coming from low carbon goods and services equates to £40 billion of investment into the capital, which could create 200,000 jobs. As London’s buildings account for nearly 80 per cent of carbon emissions, the biggest low carbon economic opportunity for businesses stems from activity to make them energy efficient. Building retrofitting (fitting older buildings with energy efficiency devices) accounts for 41 per cent of the overall investment the city requires to achieve the Mayor’s 60 per cent carbon cut by 2025. Investment in retrofitting could deliver up to 80 per cent of the 14,000 low carbon jobs that could be created per year and two thirds of the £721 million of low carbon economic activity per year up until 2025.

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