By: Steve Atkins – Principal Consultant, Consultus International
The UK’s Department for Energy Security and Net Zero (DESNZ) last week launched a new online platform to assist SMEs in their journey to become Net Zero. The website, called the UK Business Climate Hub, allows businesses to access advice to help reduce energy costs and to reduce carbon emissions, providing support across a range of sectors.
What assistance is available?
The hub contains a carbon calculator to help businesses assess their carbon footprint, and to monitor and keep track of their emissions on an ongoing basis.
It also provides advice on practical measures that can be adopted by small businesses on everything from adoption of electric vehicles to heat pumps to sourcing green suppliers.
The website contains details of funding that may be available for businesses to help in their green transition across the different regions of the UK in a one-stop-shop of information.
Why are SMEs being targeted?
It has long been recognised that the SME sector is challenging when it comes to the transition to Net Zero. Investment in energy efficiency measures is often low in the list of priorities for the sector, as businesses strive to maintain margins and competitiveness in the face of weak economic growth and financial uncertainty.
The sector accounts for approximately 25% of the overall emissions of the UK, with an estimated 5.5 million businesses in the sector.
A wider approach
The launch of the hub coincides with a broader initiative from the government, which requests business sector leaders, trade federations and local councils set a firmer Net Zero agenda; the plan is to have sector-level roadmaps in place, helping businesses across the economy to engage in Net Zero planning and implementation.
These roadmaps are to meet the objectives of; setting a credible pathway aligned to the government’s NZ Strategy; creating delivery plans and structures; collaborating on barriers, gaps and dependencies; and creating independent assessment of roadmaps.
A new Net Zero Council, consisting of leaders from businesses such as The Co-Op, HSBC, Siemens and Cemex has been set up and empowered to work with other businesses in their sectors to create tailored plans for their respective industries.
Where can I find more information?
The website for the new SME hub can be found at: https://businessclimatehub.uk/; however if you have any questions please feel free to contact your dedicated Consultant at Consultus on firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you are a SME business, you can contact our sister company, Assured Energy, who will be able to assist you with your energy needs.
(Consultus is not responsible for the content of third-party websites and cannot be held responsible for use or reliability of such sites).
In other news…
The UK Defence industry took a step towards Net Zero this week with the Army, Navy and RAF all trialling hydrogen-fuelled charging facilities on their premises; the charging is for fleet cars, not front-line military vehicles, however, but is part of wider work looking at future energy options for military use.