In a recent NUS survey, 90% of students said they were concerned about climate change (about 10 percentage points higher than the population as a whole). Students, and young people in general, are naturally more anxious about the climate crisis - the impacts of a destabilising environment will only become more acute over their lifetimes.
As businesses start to get up and running again, there’s a renewed focus on the UK’s commitment to net zero emissions by 2050. By investing in the right technology, companies can support this by lowering their carbon emissions, alongside saving on their energy bills.
Low Carbon Workspaces wants to aid businesses in this transition and is offering grants of up to £5,000 to invest in carbon-saving upgrades. This could be a grant for solar panels, battery storage, insulation, EVs or lighting.
Grants are available for SMEs based in Berkshire, Bedfordshire, Buckinghamshire, Hertfordshire, Milton Keynes and Northamptonshire, ranging from £1,000 - £5,000 to cover up to a third of the cost of energy improvements. The scheme is supported by the European Regional Development Fund.
Offices, shops, schools and other premises across the country have been shuttered or only partially open since the lockdown. In an undoubtedly difficult time, many organisations are looking to save money. This could be the perfect opportunity to look at improvements to your company’s energy use, investing in efficient technology to reduce your energy costs in the long term.
Here are a few things we can help with to make your energy usage greener and more cost-effective.
Is it possible to get free solar panels for businesses? A lot has changed since solar first started gaining popularity, with prices falling around 50% in the last decade and many of the initial subsidies like the Feed-in Tariff closed to new applicants. But there are still opportunities for companies to benefit from financed solar systems, the most promising of which are Solar PPAs.
We hear more and more about Blockchain technology. The technology creates a transparent public ledger that records series of transactions, facilitating a fast, low-cost, trusted transfer of value without the involvement of traditional intermediaries.
Already used in the financial sector, it’s only a matter of time before Blockchain hits the energy sector in a major way, particularly with the explosion of micro-generation of electricity, the ending of solar subsidies, and the advent of smart meters.
With Octopus Energy claiming to have paid customers to use excess electricity at night on four occasions in the last 12 months, real time peer-to-peer trading of electricity is surely just around the corner. Other potential applications include authentication of renewable generation and trading of emissions permits.
On 9th July, the government launched its “Road to Zero Strategy” to lead the world in zero emission vehicle technology.
Not to be confused with any other ‘Road to Zero’ or ‘Round in Circle’ government strategies, this one is all about ensuring at least 50% of cars are ultra-low emission by 2030, and ensuring that the infrastructure is in place to support this.
If you’re in charge of a ‘workplace’, the good news is that on the back of Road to Zero, the Workplace Charging Scheme will now contribute 75% of purchase and installation costs (up to a maximum of £500) towards the cost of each charging socket installed.
The grant is available for to 20 chargepoints per applicant, across all sites.
In other words, up to £10,000 per business.
According to Solar Power Portal, the latest EEVS Insight report has found that demand for solar PV among corporates remains above average, despite Brexit uncertainty impacting the wider energy efficiency sector.
This comes as no surprise to us, because we frequently see companies able to achieve a 12-20% IRR (internal rate of return) from solar PV, over the 25 year expected life of the system.
And solar PV provides a very visual statement of an organisation's green credentials. It is a technology well liked by the public and thus appealing to employees, shareholders, customers and suppliers.
Furthermore, if your organisation fits the criteria for a Solar PPA (Solar Power Purchase Agreement), you can benefit from having solar on site without paying for the system yourself.
What is a Solar PPA?
Read on to find out more, or download our brand new (and free) Guide to Solar PPAs:
Guide to Solar PPAs
(Power Purchase Agreements)
Is your business is a high electricity user? If so you could benefit from funded battery storage, enabling you to reduce your electricity bill by avoiding peak time electricity surcharges (TRIAD charges and Red Band DUOS charges).
Spirit’s warehouse adjoins the warehouse of Primrose, the online gardening retailer. Our unit is full of solar panels, inverters, batteries, LED lights and exciting things like that. Their unit is full of garden furniture, water features, awnings, wind spinners and all of the exciting things available at www.primrose.co.uk.
Earlier this year we were called in to upgrade the metal halide lights to LED.