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CAPEC Forum 2013 The Cleansing of London 1850-2010 and the significance of Politicians, Architects and Engineers 20 November 2013 Ben Papé Founder Member,

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Presentation on theme: "CAPEC Forum 2013 The Cleansing of London 1850-2010 and the significance of Politicians, Architects and Engineers 20 November 2013 Ben Papé Founder Member,"— Presentation transcript:

1 CAPEC Forum 2013 The Cleansing of London and the significance of Politicians, Architects and Engineers 20 November 2013 Ben Papé Founder Member, UK-China Eco-cities & Green Building Group

2 The Urbanisation of Population Mass migration to cities often overwhelms the existing infrastructure and causes environmental and social problems Accommodation, Education, Mobility, Sanitation (Health) and Security can all suffer if infrastructure improvement does not match population growth

3 The Urbanisation of Population London undergoes rapid growth without planning for the infrastructural consequences 1650 population at 0.5mn 1750 population at 0.75mn 1850 population at 3.2mn 1940 population at 8.6mn 1950 population at 6.8mn 2010 population at 8.3mn 2020 population up to 11.8mn

4 What Air to Cleanse

5 The Saving of London The Great Stink of 1858 impacting on water quality The Great Smog of 1952 impacting on air quality The Great Gridlocks impacting on transport quality

6 The Polluting of the Thames 1800 The Thames was acknowledged as the most contaminated and unhygienic river in the world 1848 Sewers Act mandated that all 30,000 London cesspools should be connected to the Thames 1851 Great Exhibition popularised water closets 1855 the famous physicist Michael Faraday declared that the Thames was nothing more than a real open sewer The Great Stink closed Parliament 1878 death of 650 from immersion in Thames and injestion of foul water after leisure boat disaster

7 The Rescuing of the Thames 1848 Sewers Act mandated that individual cesspools should be connected via a main sewer into the Thames 1851 Great Exhibition popularised water closets greatly increasing flow of household sewers into the Thames 1854 Joseph Bazalgette proposed a main sewer system connecting all the individual household sewers 1855 the famous physicist Michael Faraday publicly challenged civil engineers to purify the Thames 1858 The Great Stink closed Parliament and much of London and so legislation was finally enacted

8 Constructing the London Thames Sewers 1848 Sewers Act mandated that all 30,000 London cesspools should be connected to a network of sewers emptying into the Thames 1858 The Great Stink invoked Parliament to legislate 1859 Balzagette’s proposal approved for a main sewer using gravitational flow of solids aided by rain water miles of Embankment reclaimed 52 acres of land and provided overground roadways and pathways and underground railway and sewers (connecting 82 miles of main sewer and 1000 miles of street sewers) Balzagette calculated the sewer size on basis of current 3mn population and then doubled it while using the best materials which allowed continued use up to 2010.

9 The London Thames Embankments

10 The London Sewer Network

11 The Cleansing of the Thames 1800 The Thames was declared the most contaminated and unhygienic river in the world 1957 The Thames was declared biologically dead 2010 The Thames (also Yellow River in China) awarded international prize for outstanding restoration 2010 The Thames is now home to 125 species of fish and 400 species of invertebrates thus providing feeding grounds for many waterfowl and sea birds as well as seals, dolphins, otters and even one baby whale Quite a transformation thanks to the 1858 Great Stink which focussed the minds of politicians and to the leadership of one outstanding civil engineer Joseph Bazalgette

12 The Polluting of the Air of London Every breath pollutes the air Every corpse or rotting leaf pollutes the air Every car, ship, train and plane pollutes the air Every industry and household pollutes the air 1813 first thick smog smelling of coal-tar five thick smogs reduced visibility to few metres 1952 The Great Smog at 200m high and with visibility at 1-2m brought London to a standstill 1956 Clean Air Act banned coal-burning fires/furnaces 1993 Clean Air Act consolidated Acts of 1956 & 1968

13 The main sources of air pollution in the UK are road transport and industry source: National Audit Office, 2009 Although industry is a major source of emissions, the vast majority of air quality limit value exceedences are in urban areas and cause by road transport causes

14 What Air to Cleanse

15 How to Cleanse Air in London ? Options include Pray for wind and/or rain De-industrialise the City Improve public transport e.g. trains/buses/taxis Divert through-traffic onto ring-roads Limit traffic in town centres e.g. congestion charge Create low-emission zones Encourage bicycle travel e.g. Boris bikes Create pedestrian precincts Increase green spaces

16 Politicians support Engineers Key Events in Science/Engineering 1698 Thomas Savory invented steam engine 1709 Abraham Darby produced grade iron from coke 1778 Boulton/Watt produced steam engines for factories 1804 Richard Trevithick produced steam locomotive 1816 John McAdam built first macadamised road 1824 Joseph Aspdin invented Portland cement 1825 George Stephenson built first steam railway 1832 Chance Brothers invented plate glass All these required a significant heating process

17 De-industrialisation of London Older industries Newer Industries ClothingGeneral Engineering FurnitureElectrical Engineering PrintingVehicles Major manufacturers located near coal-fields. London was more a trading and commercial town.

18 De-industrialisation of London Key events over Closing of Docks. Closing of slums with relocation in new towns. Rail replaced canals as principal mode of transport. After WWII Britain lost key colonies including India. Wealthy returning colonizers preferred services to industry Clean Air Act forced closure of polluting industry including coal-fired electricity power stations UK joined EEC causing increased competition UK Govt focus on London as economic/political centre Financial markets deregulated.

19 How to Cleanse Air in London ? Options include Pray for wind and/or rain De-industrialise the City Improve public transport e.g. trains/buses/taxis Divert through-traffic onto ring-roads Limit traffic in town centres e.g. congestion charge Create low-emission zones Encourage bicycle travel e.g. Boris bikes Create pedestrian precincts Increase green spaces

20 London Underground (The Tube)

21 London ring-roads

22 How to Cleanse Air in London ? Options include Pray for wind and/or rain De-industrialise the City Divert through-traffic onto ring-roads Improve public transport e.g. trains/buses/taxis Limit traffic in town centres e.g. congestion charge Create low-emission zones Encourage bicycle travel e.g. Boris bikes Create pedestrian precincts Increase green spaces

23 London Congestion Zone Charges £8/day Penalties £65/week £130/month £195/quarter

24 London Low Emission Zone (LEZ) All buses, lorries, coaches & vans must comply with EURO III Standards. Cars excluded. Charge £200/day.

25 How to Cleanse Air in London ? Options include Pray for wind and/or rain De-industrialise the City Improve public transport e.g. trains/buses/taxis Divert through-traffic onto ring-roads Limit traffic in town centres e.g. congestion charge Create low-emission zones Encourage bicycle travel e.g. Boris bikes Create pedestrian precincts Increase green spaces

26 Boris Bikes Access charge £1/day, £5/week, £45/year. Hire charge 30min free then £1/hour to £50/24 hours. Key cost £3. 5,000 bikes across 330 locations. 47, 105 hires in one day Olympics 2012

27 How to Cleanse Air in London ? Options include Pray for wind and/or rain De-industrialise the City Improve public transport e.g. trains/buses/taxis Divert through-traffic onto ring-roads Limit traffic in town centres e.g. congestion charge Create low-emission zones Encourage bicycle travel e.g. Boris bikes Create pedestrian precincts Increase green spaces

28 Outer London Green Spaces G

29 Inner London Green Spaces London Green Spaces now over 3,000 including:- 286 public parks 117 wildlife reserves 115 gardens 31 picnic spots 22 commons/heaths 20 farms 11 cemeteries

30 London Tower Bridge

31 60 years since the Great Smog 60 years since Smog of December ,000 extra deaths recorded in 1 week in London as a result of pollution Led to Lord Beaver Report and Clean Air Act Reduced SO 2 and smoke emissions dramatically 31

32 Key Actions for London Age limits for taxis (23,000 black cab & 60,000 private) Promoting low-emission vehicles Promoting eco-driving New Standards for Low-Emission Zones Retrofitting older Buses (2,500) Target areas where air-quality is poor Use planning system to reduce emissions from new developments Retrofitting homes/offices to make them more energy efficient Pray for wind and/or rain


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