BEIS Sustainability Tools for SMEs

SMEs make up the majority of businesses in the UK. Therefore, their (i) combined use of resources and (ii) output in emissions can make a huge difference to the UK's environmental strategy.

The Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) offers a range of tools for SMEs to help make their businesses more energy efficient and keep up to date with climate change.Going green in business is not just a positive step for the environment i.e., “Doing the Right Thing". It can also reduce costs and improve efficiency, giving businesses a competitive advantage. Those that fail to keep up to date with tackling these issues will find themselves left behind and there is no better time than during a national energy crisis for SMEs to tackle these issues within their businesses.

Sustainability Tools

Signing up to the SME Climate Commitment can be the first step in becoming a more sustainable business. At the time of writing 3612 UK businesses have signed up to make the commitment, a number which is growing daily.The SME Climate Hub offers a free Carbon Calculator which can be used to measure emissions by entering some detail about the day to day running of a business. The calculator then produces a personalised and detailed breakdown of emissions allowing an SME to assess which areas of its business need attention first. These could be small changes such as replacing lightbulbs and switching energy providers to signing up for schemes and grants that are available. For example, small businesses can currently access the following key support:

The SME Hub also offers a free ClimateFit online education course which explains how to reach net zero and breaks the process down into 7 achievable steps. Other practical advice on how to reduce emissions is available at the Business Climate Leaders Hub which offers general advice but also sector specific advice for businesses in the following sectors:

  • Agriculture
  • Manufacturing
  • Retail
  • Tech
  • Construction
  • Hospitality

Each SME making the SME Climate Commitment, then receives regular updates from BEIS helping them to future-proof their businesses. All signatories to the commitment can also display the SME Climate Hub logo on their marketing and websites, perhaps thereby retaining existing customers and employees and attracting new ones who are environmentally conscious. BEIS also offers the SME Climate Hub Tools and Resources library for further tools, help and support.If you have any climate change related legal queries, please feel free to contact Freeths' dedicated Clean Energy, Waste & Sustainability team led by Clare King (Clean Energy ), Kirstin Roberts (Waste, Sustainability and ESG) and James Larmour (Projects & Infrastructure).

If you'd like to discuss the topics covered in this article, please get in touch with authors Kirstin Roberts and Lizzie Bedford.


The content of this page is a summary of the law in force at the date of publication and is not exhaustive, nor does it contain definitive advice. Specialist legal advice should be sought in relation to any queries that may arise.

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