Net Zero Week, Day 3: Support mechanisms available on your roadmap to net zero

Support & Financing

When DB Group were planning our own decarbonation strategy, we had several questions to ask but had limited resources and a lack of understanding as to where we would go to source the answers to our questions on getting advice and support for our roadmap to net zero.

Questions such as:

Are there any grants or funding models available to support us through the process?
Are there any local government initiatives or groups supporting companies through Net Zero?
We have reduced our consumption as much as possible, what’s next?
Is there a definition of Net Zero that we need to follow?
Can we set our date sooner than 2045 or 2050?
Does our supply chain need to follow the same Net Zero Strategy as we do be fully Net Zero?
Do we need to include Scope 3 emissions?
By looking at the questions above, Net Zero may seem daunting, but it does not have to be.

The good news is that there are many organisations, ready to answer your questions, offer support, provide guidance, and assist you, reassuring you that what you are doing is making a difference.

Community 

Net Zero is not a competition as to who can be the first to achieve it.  It is true that many organisations may find the process simpler than others although ultimately, we are all facing similar challenges.  

DB Group feels that coming together as a community will help everyone to understand the challenges we are likely to face and through collaboration with other like-minded companies, start to mitigate the risks and meet the challenges head-on.    

Therefore how do we know who to go to? 

In Scotland there are a number of companies including DB Group that are helping our clients to plan for Net Zero, emphasising the need to taking the time to plan, bringing together a team of experts with a blend of internal and external expertise, surveying and creating a realistic timeframe.   

The Scottish Net Zero Community is a partnership between The Scottish Business Network and CBN Expert to provide all businesses in Scotland with information and insights to inform and support businesses as they start and progress their journey to a NetZero future.  It also provides access to a network of experts who can provide specialist support as and when required.  Lastly, it provides membership of a community aligned with the United Nations & UK Governments Race to Zero initiative which forms a critical part of COP26 which is being held in Glasgow in November this year. 

In addition to the partnership with the Scottish Net Zero Community, DB Enviro have further strengthened our approach to energy efficiency and verification by working alongside Future Net Zero & Carbon Expert to compliment the process offering a starting point for many and a helping hand for others.  

Forming a community will answer many of the questions we have and will lead to simplifying the process for all. 

Financing your journey to Net Zero. 

We have highlighted the need to plan for net zero, surveying sites, identifying opportunities to save energy and investigating if greener fuels will help us to meet the targets identified. 

What we do not want organisations to do is to get to hung up on planning their roadmap to achieve Net Zero, without fully understanding the financials that will be required to support the recommendations and feedback from feasibility studies.  

Achieving Net Zero could become expensive without tapping into some much need funding models, interest free loans and grants although there are many steps that could work out to have no impact to cost at all.  

All these financial schemes will need to be factored into your plan with the  planning stage also having a financial cost associated with it.  

For example:
  • Depending on the size of your premises Solar can be installed with no upfront cost. 
  • Solar can also be leased, paying a monthly cost rather than an upfront payment. 
  • Up to 50% funding is available on Electric Vehicle Charging Points – Scotland Only 
  • The Office of Zero Emissions Vehicles provides a £350 voucher per charging point 
  • Water conservation projects can be very low cost with quick ROI’s 
  • Interest-free loans are available for energy efficiency projects. 
  • Company Electric Vehicles have no Benefit in Kind Tax 
  • Many efficiency products benefit further from a tax relief through the enhanced capital allowance scheme. 
  • BeMS optimisation  

There are however a number of projects that require significant investment, and these will need to be programmed in with your financial teams with the likelihood of a business case, proof of concept and science-based calculations to support the project before implementation. 

Some of the larger scale projects such as hydrogen as your primary fuel will offer a different aspect to removing the need for gas and replacing with a greener fuel although when are we likely to have the scalability of hydrogen to reach all of our business needs.  

Financing Net Zero will not be straight forward and hence why we have continued to expand upon the key elements within each of our videos and blogs.  

  • To recap on the key elements: 
  • Take the time to plan Net Zero 
  • Define what your organisation wants from Net Zero 
  • Bring together a team of experts 
  • Survey your buildings 
  • Create a Plan B 
  • Understand the challenges 
  • Identify the timescales  
  • Work with your community 
  • Track your Performance 
  • Create a Plan B 
  • Review how you will finance Net Zero 
  • Share your successes with others  
  • Mitigate the risk of failure 

There are many challenges to Net Zero with finance and resource being two of them.  Reach out to your local community, speak with your team of experts, consultants and peers and learn from each other. Share the experience and help others to achieve their targets. 

Further Reading

Steering Scotland’s pathway to net zero – gov.scot (www.gov.scot)

Discover more on Net Zero with DB Group