The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, has announced the installation of a new public water fountain in one of London’s busiest shopping locations, Carnaby Street, and invited bids to install more water fountains in the capital.
As part of his work to reduce single-use plastic bottles in London, the mayor has committed to delivering up to 20 new water fountains across the city this year. In addition to the new fountain in Kingly Court, Carnaby, three more will follow this summer – two in Liverpool Street Station and one in Bankside’s Flat Iron Square.
To help secure locations for the next 16 fountains, Sadiq is calling on land and site owners to bid for funding from a pot of up to £75,000, up to £50,000 of which is provided by the mayor, with an additional £25,000 provided by water fountain specialists MIW.
Applications will be considered from site owners bidding for fountains in busy shopping streets, business districts, public attractions and other places that have high public footfall.
The bids will be assessed by the #OneLess campaign, which is led by Zoological Society of London’s (ZSL) and which aims to reduce the number of single-use plastic bottles that end up in our rivers and oceans. ZSL will also assess the site applications on accessibility, visibility and access to water – making water refills available for as many Londoners as possible. Applicants should visit www.onelessbottle.org/fountainfund for information on how to apply, with an expression of interest deadline of 24th April 2018.
The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, said: “To get a grip on needless plastic waste we need to provide simple ways of refilling and accessing free water, and water fountains are the much-needed solution”
Dr Heather Koldewey, #OneLess campaign Director and Head of Marine and Freshwater Conservation at ZSL said: “London is a coastal city, connected to the ocean by the River Thames. Every day the ocean sends oxygen, weather, fresh water and wildlife into the heart of our city through the Thames and every day we send plastic debris back.”
The average adult in London buys more than three plastic water bottles every week* – a startling 175 bottles every year. In total, some 7.7 billion plastic bottles are bought across the UK each year, resulting in substantial amounts of single-use plastic waste.
Earlier this month the Mayor launched Refill London, which encourages shops, businesses and cafes to provide free tap water to members of the public. The first phase of the scheme is running in five areas of London: Greenwich town centre, Lewisham High Street, the Southbank and Bankside, Regent St, and London Bridge. Outlets include Costa, Tate Modern, BFI Imax and Leon.