A free workshop on how small-to-medium sized enterprises (SMEs) in the Portsmouth region can reduce their carbon footprints and save money is to be held in the city.

The Carbon Trust will be teaming up with Portsmouth Technopole, to introduce the Green Business Fund, which provides free energy assessments, advice and funding for SMEs.

Taking place on Tuesday, 11th December at Portsmouth Technopole, the event is hosted by UKSPA member Oxford Innovation and looks at energy management, including understanding and reducing energy bills through behavioural and low-cost measures.

There will also be a focus on major areas of energy consumption – heating, lighting, equipment and insulation.

Access to funding and free one-to-one site audits will also be highlighted during the 9am to 12noon session.

According to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, “the built environment holds the greatest opportunity for cost-effective emissions mitigation of any sector”.

Robin Sheppard is the centre manager for Portsmouth Technopole, which is by the M275 gateway to the port city and has 20,000 sq ft of offices and meeting rooms.

She said: “The energy efficiency support service will show how local business owners and senior managers can reduce carbon footprints whilst saving money at the same time.

“According to industry figures, SMEs account for just over half of energy consumption for heating and cooling – much derived from fossil fuels such as coal and gas.

‘”However, it would appear that there are few policies focused on incentivising energy efficiency.

“This workshop provides an ideal opportunity to identify best practices and put them into effect as a new-year resolution for businesses, their staff and the environment.”

The Carbon Trust Green Business Fund provides direct funded support through energy assessments, training workshops, equipment procurement support and up to £5,000 capital contribution towards your energy saving equipment purchase.

Portsmouth Technopole, located at Kingston Crescent and which forms part of four innovation centres owned by the University of Portsmouth in the city centre, is operated by Oxford Innovation.

According to Parliamentary figures, there are 5.7 million businesses in the UK, of which 99% are SMEs, employing between one to 249 people.

“Given these numbers, and the resultant energy consumption, you can see how vital it is that SMEs in the Portsmouth region do their bit to adopt low-carbon technologies and reduce fossil fuel usage,” said Robin.

Open-source figures show that micro businesses have an average annual electricity bill of £1,349, with small businesses at £2,566 and medium at £4,208.

With average gas consumption, it is £516, £965 and £1,052 respectively.

Renewable energy in the UK includes solar, wind, hydro, landfill gas, biomass, biogas and biodegradable.

To register for The Green Business Fund Workshop, click on to: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/green-business-fund-workshop-portsmouth-an-introduction-to-energy-efficiency-for-smes-tickets-33038729730

Submitted on 27/11/2018