Renewable Energy Challenge

Looking for solutions that will use the water area for renewable energy production

What is the Challenge?

Develop a proof of concept for renewable energy production utilising the Royal Docks water area, leading to a transferable, scalable and commercially viable prototype for the generation of renewable energy that is usable by local customers, such as businesses, landlords, developers, residents and other projects.



The Royal Docks water area, made up of three key Docks – Royal Victoria, Royal Albert & King George V, in the London Borough of Newham. (Restrictions may apply, including physical constraints, lease agreements, management and safety requirements etc.) 

Who are the end users?

Partners (businesses, landlords, developers), residents and local enterprise zone projects across the Royal Docks, local developments and their tenants (such as at Albert Island), the Royal Docks Management Authority (RoDMA) and London City Airport.

What impact are we seeking?

  • A physical prototype developed and its application tested in the production of renewable energy in the Royal Docks
  • Power delivered to the local grid, or directly to local consumers
  • Longer-term impact includes significant production of clean and renewable energy in the Royal Docks area
  • Longer-term impact also includes scaling to other water areas

What will the Resilience Partner provide? 

  • Access to team information and data across the water, including its physical and technical makeup, ownership, constraints and opportunities
  • Partnership facilitation with water users, management organisations and local stakeholders (e.g. University of East London (UEL), Royal Docks Management Authority (RoDMA), London & Regional (L&R) etc.)
  • Facilitate a project scoping workshop
  • Participate in working groups and project reviews as required
  • Access to space on the docks water to test concepts (restrictions may apply) – It is anticipated that the water area at King George V Dock would be most appropriate
  • If successful, marketing and promotional support beyond the Resilience Fund offer

What does good look like?

  • A proof of concept which utilises the Royal Docks water as a primary resource to generate renewable energy 
  • A physical prototype that generates renewable energy
  • Has the potential to be transferable, scalable and commercially viable, with real-world applications
  • Tests the opportunities, constraints & technical requirements needed for successful delivery 
  • The concept is not expected to be carbon neutral, but its scalable application must be
  • Can deliver power locally and connect into the local grid, creating affordable energy for end users

Background information

  • The Royal Docks water is the area’s most significant physical asset (250 acres). However, it is underutilised and offers good opportunity for development, activation and the promotion of innovative new uses.
  • The Royal Docks is undergoing significant regeneration but currently lacks sufficient power capacity to meet the growing demands of future development.
  • The Greater London Authority (GLA) and the London Borough of Newham have committed to addressing the climate emergency. Urban environments contribute significantly to climate change through high energy consumption. Measures must be developed at a local scale to address this.
  • Developing innovative new uses for the water, promoting innovation and addressing climate change are all key themes of the Royal Docks delivery plan.
  • A holistic water use strategy is being developed by the Royal Docks Team for which renewable energy production is a potential future use highlighted for integration.
  • The Royal Docks Enterprise Zone has broader aspirations to become a home for green business innovation in London. Extracting renewable energy from the dock water will provide indirect support to this vision by helping the area become attractive to investors in this field.

About the Resilience Partner

The Royal Docks is London’s only Enterprise Zone — one of only 48 in the country. Enterprise Zones are part of the government’s industrial strategy and are designated areas that provide tax breaks and other business incentives. The Royal Docks Team is a joint initiative from the Mayor of London and Mayor of Newham tasked to drive an ambitious £314m regeneration programme across the Royal Docks Enterprise Zone. The Royal Docks Team is made up of c.40 people operating across development, placemaking, events, economic development, cultural activation, community engagement, communication and marketing.