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Green business support

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How can I reduce my businesses Carbon Footprint?


Improve insulation and lower air infiltration

In a typical commercial building, energy is lost through:

  • air infiltration – 35%
  • windows – 26%
  • roof – 22%
  • walls – 9%
  • floor – 8%

Preventing outside air from coming in and insulating interior spaces is therefore critical to increasing building efficiency.

Keep in mind that increasing air tightness can affect interior moisture levels. Changes to ventilation may be required to manage condensation.

Increase air tightness around doors

Doors are a major source of energy loss in non-domestic buildings.

Prevent this by increasing air tightness in commonly used areas such as entrance lobbies and goods delivery areas.

Options include fitting:

  • doors with brush strips and automatic closures
  • a revolving door or entrance lobby partition
  • PVC curtains between spaces with different temperatures
  • airtight seals around vehicular access doors

Use the Carbon Trust’s Building Fabric Guide for more detailed guidance.


Transport accounts for over a quarter of the UK’s total carbon emissions. By planning routes and using vehicles more efficiently you can reduce your impact and save money. Find out what other measures you can take and the benefits involved.

Switch to electric or low emissions vehicles

Electric vehicles (EVs)

There is a growing range of zero or low emission EVs you can buy, rent or lease. Compared to petrol and diesel vehicles they have lower running and repair bills.

Government discounts are available to reduce upfront costs. You can also get a government grant for installing EV charge points at your home or workplace.

Low emissions petrol or diesel vehicles

If switching to electric vehicles is not an option, choose petrol or diesel vehicles with lower emissions. Generally, the smaller and newer the vehicle, the less emissions it will produce.

Find information about running costs, fuel efficiency and emissions per car model.

Use vehicles more efficiently

You can benefit from using vehicles in a safer, more fuel-efficient way. Take the following measures:

  • keep tyres correctly inflated
  • check and service vehicles regularly
  • only use heating, air conditioning or mobile charging when strictly needed
  • drive more mindfully – anticipate what is ahead, go easy on brakes and acceleration
  • use fuel efficiently – driving at 50-60 mph produces less emissions than driving at 70-80mph
  • use GPS tracking software – to monitor and improve driver efficiency

Train your drivers

You can train drivers to operate more efficiently. Find a driver training supplier near you.


What can I do to reduce my water usage?

There are several things you can consider when reducing your business’ water usage.

Replace taps within your premises with spray taps

They reduce the volume of water coming out of the tap without diminishing pressure quality. Replacing toilets with dual-flush toilets can save thousands of litres of water a year, providing a large opportunity for saving money within your business whilst also being more sustainable.

If you have old plumbing fixtures, you can lose up to 20 gallons of water daily due to a dripping faucet, which is damaging not only to your organisation’s finances but also wasteful to the environment. Therefore, installing low-flow or spray taps and low-flow toilets will improve the efficiency of your plumbing system.

Get your staff on board with reducing water consumption

Every member of your team and even visitors to your organisation should take an interest in reducing water consumption. Staff may benefit from an awareness training exercise surrounding this topic to educate them on everyday habits to reduce water consumption.

This could include:

  • correct faucet running time
  • smart water habits with the use of reusable water bottles – which is another aspect to consider for your company’s branding
  • Sustainable use of any onsite laundry, dishwasher or shower facility
Harvest rainwater

If feasible, this can become a renewable source of water. With a few modifications, buildings in urban areas can benefit from harvesting rainwater and treat and store this water on site for use within your business.

LED Lights


The longer that lights are switched on, the more energy will be used. Meeting rooms, storage areas and corridors are often lit unnecessarily. Creating reminders to switch off lights (this applies to employees and cleaners) before leaving a room can prevent unnecessary lightning costs.

It’s a myth that turning lights off and back on uses more energy than leaving them on all the time. When looking at efficient lighting in your business, consider the following:

  • Are all your lights LEDs and energy efficient?
  • Is continuous lighting needed in certain spaces? If so, consider switching to motion sensor lights.
  • Are staff aware of their responsibility to turn off lights? Think about how you can encourage them to turn off lights when they leave a room.
  • Are dim lights getting replaced?

Natural light is often overlooked. Relocating objects that block windows and desks in corners can sometimes mitigate the need for artificial lighting. It will also create a more pleasant working environment.

  • Consider lighter paint colours or reflective paint.
  • Consider vertical window blinds, which let in more light than horizontal ones when open or closed.
  • Consider relocating workstations to well-lit areas.

Lighting controls and sensors are low cost and can be easy to implement. Occupancy sensors could cut energy use considerably from lighting. You could consider:

  • Installing a timer switch to ensure lighting is switched off outside working hours.
  • Reviewing internal and external lightning with sensors, including:
    • Timed switches.
    • Movement sensors.
    • Daylight sensors.