Business climate change toolkit

Going greener could see your business grow by appealing to more environmentally conscious customers, save money and help to nurture our natural environment as it plays its part to achieve the borough’s ambitious target to be net zero carbon by 2030.

This toolkit sets out different actions that your business can take to become more sustainable, the benefits of taking action and links through to more detailed information.

Measure your business's carbon footprint

The carbon footprint of a business is equal to all of the greenhouse gas emissions from its activities. Businesses can calculate their footprint for free using these tools:

The Greenhouse Gas Protocol categories emissions as:

Scope one: direct emissions

Emissions released as a direct result of the activities carried out by a business. For example, the emissions released due to heating an office or by the fuel used in a business’s vehicles.

Scope two: indirect emissions from purchasing energy

Emissions created when producing the energy a company uses. For most businesses, this means the emissions created when the electricity it uses is produced. A business’s scope two emissions can be zero if it purchases 100% renewable electricity

Scope three: indirect emissions

All the emissions a business is indirectly responsible for up and down its supply chain. For example, emissions associated with the products it buys from its suppliers and the emissions emitted when customers use its products.

Scope three covers emissions from a sources including travel, distribution, waste, staff commuting, purchased goods and services, water consumption, and IT. Businesses supplying larger organisations may already be supplying this information to their customers so they can use it to calculate their carbon footprints.

Ways for your business to take action

The carbon footprint of a business is made up of all the emissions emitted as a result of its activities. The world’s leading greenhouse gas accounting standard The Greenhouse Gas Protocol categories emissions into one of three scopes depending on where they come from.

Reduce your energy usage

Reducing the energy used to heat and power the building your business operates from can cut your carbon and save you money.

Understanding when your business uses energy and how much it uses is an important first step to help plan how to make reductions. For larger or more complex sites, additional monitoring could be useful.

Measures could include:

  • mounting solar panels (there are free solar panel capacity reports available for owners and tenants of buildings with larger roofs along with information about funding opportunities like community energy)
  • swapping to a low-carbon heating system – for example installing a heat pump and applying for a £7,500 grant from the Government’s Boiler Upgrade Scheme to help pay for it,
  • installing installation and blocking draughts,
  • replacing lights with LEDs,
  • encouraging staff to turn off lights when leaving meeting rooms and to shut down appliances like computers at the end of the day, and
  • turning down the heat in rarely used rooms and areas or when buildings aren’t in use.

Your building’s energy performance certificate (EPC) can help you understand how efficient it already is and how it might be improved.

Under the latest Government regulations, landlords of non-domestic properties must ensure they have a minimum energy performance certificate rating of E. You can check the EPC for your building on the Government’s website.

Encourage staff to get around greener

Your business can cut its emissions and help its staff reduce theirs too by:

  • holding more meetings online to cut down on travel
  • swapping to electric vehicles in your fleet (and companies that buy electric cars currently qualify for tax relief on their purchase prices)
  • installing electric vehicle charging points at work – the Government’s charging point discount scheme can help,
  • encouraging staff to share lifts – for example using Liftshare
  • sharing information with staff about local cycle ways and local bus routes
  • giving staff perks or other benefits to encourage them to travel more sustainably – for example taking advantage of the Cycle2Work scheme.
Buy less and reduce waste

If you are responsible for buying and disposing of items for your business, you could cut its carbon footprint by:

  • only replacing appliances and IT when you have to and, if you do need to buy something new, buying the most energy efficient option you can
  • sourcing from suppliers who provide the most sustainable versions of the products you need – and asking your suppliers to question theirs if they’re not sure about their products’ green credentials
  • encouraging staff to reduce, reuse, repair, recycle (in that order) – so, for example, reduce how much they print, repair IT rather than buying new, and recycle paper and other items when they’re at work, and
  • considering, if your business caters for events or has a canteen, looking for foods with lower carbon emissions.
Help make our borough greener and more vibrant

If your business owns land or maintains green space, you could play a vital role in helping to make Basingstoke and Deane more green.

Corporate volunteering is a great team-building activity for your staff that also does something good for the environment. Your businesses can get in touch with our Rangers to book a work party by emailing WildlifeConservation@basingstoke.gov.uk.

Improving the natural environment in our borough not only captures carbon to address the climate emergency, but also increases the diversity of plants and wildlife locally to tackle the ecological emergency too.

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