Headlines: June 19th, 2007



A deal to provide green electricity negotiated by the Office of Government Commerce with EdF Energy will help central and local government to achieve their sustainability targets and also cut fuel bills. Under the deal buying green energy will be no more expensive than buying “brown”, non-renewable, energy and paying the associated climate change levy.

The current arrangements with EdF provide for electricity to be supplied at some 3-5% below the average forward market price. From October, when the new one billion deal becomes effective, these prices will be maintained for green electricity.

Sustainability targets call for public bodies to be sourcing at least 10% of their electricity from renewable sources by March 2008. The new arrangements will provide for up to one third of the electricity requirement to be supplied from renewable energy, until 2011.

The contract also includes a programme of site assessments for suitable renewable onsite generation, and toolkits for energy efficiency programmes for public bodies to meet the challenge of reducing carbon emissions by saving energy. There will also be an innovative carbon off-setting option which allows customers to buy certified emissions reduction certificates. These certificates fund climate change reduction schemes, for example projects providing energy efficient stoves to families in developing nations.

Transforming Government Procurement, the strategy launched in January 2007, highlighted the central importance of procurement in delivering high-quality public services and best value for money. This agreement with EdF is an early major success of the strategy.