Practical first steps for SMEs taking the green route

With the noise around COP26 showing no signs of diminishing over the last couple of months, the need for action is as prevalent as ever.

As large companies make huge commitments towards net zero and carbon reduction goals, clean energy specialists Opergy look at ways SMEs can take realistic steps to prepare themselves for a sustainable energy and cleaner technology future that can make a tangible impact. Managing Director Johnathan Reynolds comments.

It’s no secret that the climate crisis has hit a critical point, and the recent COP26 summit brought the need for accelerated action to the global stage. But what is the reality of that for SMEs? For large businesses with greater resources the path can seem clear, but for smaller businesses where time, money and people are further and fewer between it can feel like a mammoth task.

At Opergy, we are well-versed at helping businesses to actualise their clean energy futures, introducing them to practical and accessible steps they can take to address their carbon footprint, and understand where they should focus in the immediate to longer term.

Often, the first step smaller businesses can take towards their clean future is ensuring they use the wealth of data available at their fingertips. This data can help businesses to develop clear pathways to net zero, understand their carbon footprint and even access new and emerging technologies. Research and high-quality data will be key to businesses looking to clean up their operations following COP26.

And it’s important to ensure any take-aways implemented are done so in a joined-up way across the entire business. Ensuring an integrated approach will make the biggest impact on your carbon emissions. A company-wide strategy could include supporting local communities, and linking up with wider regional projects that can further your impact.

With programmes such as the Offshore Renewable Energy Catapult’s Fit 4 Offshore Renewables available to businesses, there is a wealth of resources out there. Opergy are proud to support the F4OR programme, offering cohort businesses our expert knowledge on offshore wind, how their business can weave clean energy throughout their company as well as making the most of new and existing opportunities.

Earlier in the year we kickstarted Net Zero East, a sister-venture to Hydrogen East launch in Summer 2020. Our team have begun compiling a range of practical insights, comprehensive digital tools, and guides on how SMEs can begin their own net zero journey.

Whether you’re simply looking to address your carbon footprint or harness the opportunities that will arise as the energy transition progresses it is important to understand how you can apply practical steps to your business in context.

Despite all the resources, data and projects available, making sense of it all and finding the time to do so, can be difficult for SMEs. Even with a desire to learn, it can be daunting to navigate and create unnecessary barriers to those willing to make the change. My advice would be to seek out some expert help or find someone who can mentor you in your journey to a cleaner future.

No matter the stage of your journey, it’s clear that now is the time to take action.

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