Support for SMEs to cut their emissions - information and grant funding - PKF Francis Clark
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Support for SMEs to cut their emissions – information and grant funding

A key topic that has been bubbling away for some time with our clients is that of sustainability and linked closely to this the government’s pledge for the country to achieve net zero by 2050. However, clients have also said that they don’t know where to start as there has been a lack of any information or steering from government for SMEs.

I recently came across a new government campaign – “Together for our Planet – Business Climate Leaders” and thought it useful to summarise this and related initiatives along with thoughts on SME funding for projects in the pursuit of net zero.

(Note: SMEs based in the West of England may be interested in checking out the West of England Green Business Grants – application window closes 11 July 2021 – further details below).

Together for our Planet ‘Business Climate Leaders’ campaign

The campaign was launched at the end of May with the government “call(ing) on every small business in the UK to take small, practical steps to cut their emissions as part of the UK’s journey to net zero by 2050”.

Key to this campaign is the UK Business Climate Hub which aims to be “a one-stop-shop to make a climate commitment and access best-in-class tools and resources. These tools and resources provide support measuring your emissions, developing your climate strategy, reducing your own emissions and the emissions in your value chain, and exemplify complementary offset projects.”

The Hub also:

  • Stresses the positives of engaging with a net zero commitment including: growing and future-proofing your business and brand
  • Gives practical ideas for getting started
  • Asks SMEs to make a commitment to take part and then report on progress

As per the news release at launch “The campaign will also provide small businesses with access to some of the UK’s biggest businesses – including NatWest, Google, Scottish Power and BT – and leading climate experts to support them in taking the simple and practical steps to protect the planet, and the benefits of future-proofing and growing a low carbon business. Partner support will include hosting a range of collaborative events throughout summer, creating a small business training programme on taking green actions, and using their high-profile digital channels to drive small business audiences to the climate hub.”

I would suggest you check it out, if not already done so, and take up the commitment to:

  1. Halve our greenhouse gas emissions before 2030
  2. Achieve net zero emissions before 2050
  3. Disclose our progress on a yearly basis

SME funding for net zero projects – a work in progress

Some, of the grant funding initiatives are local. For example:

Scheme Funding Details
West of England Green Business Grants

(for eligible businesses based in West of England region – located in Bath & North East Somerset, Bristol, North Somerset or South Gloucestershire local authority area)

Up to £15,000 per business to pay for 50-80% of the eligible capital costs/ projects improve their energy efficiency of their buildings and business operations Application window – now open until 11 July 2021

Eligibility criteria and application form at link

 

Low Carbon Dorset

(for eligible businesses located and operating within Dorset, Bournemouth or Poole)

Low Carbon Grants – “We have nearly allocated all our grant pot…”Grants have been available to help organisations deliver renewable energy and energy efficiency projects.  Typically, these grants have covered up to 40% of project costs..” Details of the programme are at link

Hope this has been helpful, and this is a topic that we will be returning to including keeping you updated with the grants available.

FEATURING: Richard Wadman
Richard qualified as a Chartered Accountant with KPMG in 1993. Since 2006 he has worked in Corporate Finance, firstly with the predecessor firm in Truro… read more
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