Support Net Zero as a business

Actions to reduce carbon emissions can vary for each business, but there are always steps you can take to lower your carbon footprint, no matter what the size or industry.

Subscribe to our Newsletters
Subscribe to our Newsletter

Subscribe to our Leicestershire newsletters for the latest news, tips, and support.

Indicates required field
Select your Subscriptions

See our privacy section. You can unsubscribe at any time from within the emails you receive.

net zero business graphic

Here are some simple steps you can take as a business to help Leicestershire become net zero by 2045 or before.

Measure your carbon impact  

In order to make reductions, it is important to know the greenhouse gas emissions your business creates. By taking this first step, you’ll be able to understand the contribution your business is making to climate change and know which areas to begin to prioritise taking action.  

The Carbon Trust has created a number of useful resources for businesses, including a carbon footprint calculator. All guides come with background detail and clear instruction on how to use them. 

Tools for smaller businesses 

Carbon Trust – emissions calculator 

Carbon Trust – energy management self-assessment tool 

Tools for larger businesses 

Carbon Trust – energy benchmarking tool 

Other recommended guides to refer to as a starting point

Small business user guide - Department for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA).  

Green travel and commuting 

For many organisations, travel and commuting is one of the most carbon-producing activities.

To engage employees and help embed climate-friendly behaviour, you could consider: 

  • Introducing a cycle to work scheme by supporting employees to cycle to work through a salary sacrifice scheme. 

  • Supporting employees in a greener commute, by setting up an e-bike sharing programme, promote carpooling to work or introduce incentives to staff such as discounted or free public transport. 

  • If you own your own fleet and are in the process of adding new fleet vehicles, consider opting for hybrid or fully electric models. If you need guidance on where to start, the Energy Saving Trust, funded by the Department of Transport are offering fleet support on how to make fleet more efficient, cost-effective and lower emissions. For eligible organisations, this is offered at no cost.  

More efficient ways of working  

Electricity consumption in office environments is often quite high, not only putting pressure on utility budgets, but also contributing to business carbon emissions.

Ways to optimise energy efficiency in your office include:  

  • Investing in low-carbon technology such as LED lighting and solar panels. Find available government funding to help your business become greener.  

  • Get a smart meter to help monitor workplace energy use in real-time. This can inform evidence-based changes to your energy use.  

  • Review energy labels on office appliances – this will help understand the energy efficiency of appliances.  

  • Consider switching to a green tariff to reduce the impact of your energy use. Using energy from a renewable source can help your business end its dependency on fossil fuel and help to decrease your overall impact on the environment. 

  • Encourage behaviour change such as switching off lights and appliances when not in use and more mindful use of printers and photocopying. Running a training day/course can help keep staff informed.  

If you do have staff working from home, encourage staff to work in an environmentally friendly way.

Check out University of York’s top tips on how to reduce your carbon footprint whilst working from home. 

Reduce Waste  

Focus on reducing all types of waste, whether this is wasted energy, materials, food, and waste as this all creates increased emissions and cost the business extra money.  

  • Remember the 5 R’s – Reduce, Reuse, Repair, Recycle and Refuse. This can apply to all areas of your business from office supplies to packaging and food, to operations and supply chains.  

  • If documents and paperwork are still being printed, consider transitioning to digital records to minimise use of resources such as paper and ink.  

  • Involve staff in identifying areas to minimise waste. Setting up a green team and rewarding suggestions that result in savings can be a great start!  

Educate employees and customers  

Change begins with awareness and knowledge. As a business you can promote dialogue amongst staff and customers by embedding carbon in your day-to-day activities through company practices and policies around sustainability.

Being loud and proud about what you’re doing to tackle climate change can encourage further behaviour change and result in greater emissions savings.  

Additional advice and further useful links  

There are many sources of support which can provide further help including the following: 

Midlands Net Zero Hub – facilitates investment into energy projects, with a range of toolkits to support and help with unlocking finance options for energy projects across the region 

GOV.UK website – offers guidance on waste and environmental impact for businesses 

Environmental taxes, reliefs and schemes for businesses – relief or exemption from some taxes if you're eligible, e.g., if you use a lot of energy because of the nature of your business, you’re a small business that doesn’t use much energy or you buy energy-efficient technology for your business. 

WRAP – updates on sources of funding, advice, and support to help businesses obtain the benefits of reducing waste, developing sustainable products, and using resources in an efficient way. 

Environment Agency (EA)  - news, guidance and research on environmental issues

LLEP Growth Hub Business Gateway - support to make your small business greener

University of Nottingham Energy Institute – business support for energy innovation in Derbyshire, Nottinghamshire or Leicestershire   

Universities Partnership, Responsible business – a toolkit to future-proof your organisation which provides practical advice on how to manage your carbon footprint