How do I do this?

Again, reducing energy use comes first – for example better insulation: For more info see the Carbon Trust. For larger organisations ISO 50001 Energy Management Standard sets a robust methodology. Energy audits can identify specific areas to save energy if you don’t have internal expertise. Then phase out all fossil fuels:

Step 1: Make a list of non-renewable fuel use (whether space/building heating systems or used for industrial processes) directly by your organisation and total up annual usage.

Step 2: Make a plan to replace these systems e.g. when they next need replacing – reviewing the financial and operational implications of the options, including considering that taxes on fossil fuels are likely to raise their cost in future.

The zero emissions options are as follows:

  1. Heat pumps, either Ground Source or Air Source, powered with 100% renewable electricity – very environmental yet may need retrofitting of how heat is delivered
  2. Solar thermal run with renewable electricity – very environmental, yet may not be suitable for all business circumstances
  3. Green gas supply from a certified renewable gas supplier who supports green gas development
  4. Electric boilers powered with renewable electricity – note this is normally less effective than using a heat pump
  5. Biomass – though beware the biomass in question is sourced locally and doesn’t take up food viable land
  6. Gas supply with Renewable Gas Guarantees of Origin (RGGOs) – note this should be the last resort option.

You may be able to get help with the cost of low carbon technologies, such as through the UK Non-Domestic Renewable Heat Incentive that pays you for the energy you generate, even though you use it (this incentive is scheduled to be replaced in March 2022). 

If you are an SME you may enter 0 for usage if you do not have this data readily available, but you still commit to reach 100% by the date set. 

If your organisation has no direct operational building or process/manufacture fuel use, enter 0 and then today’s date – you commit to to use 100% renewable energy in future if you do take on supplies.

If there are locations where you are responsible for usage but do not have control of the infrastructure or supplier: communicate with your landlords or site managers about your wishes to move to zero carbon heating and consider moving sites if there is no progress. If the heating is gas, you can purchase Renewable Gas Guarantees of Origin (RGGOs) to effectively use ‘green gas’ which comes from waste treatment and agriculture.

If you completed this already, great work! Enter 0 fuel usage, the date you did so, and remember cutting your energy usage over time is still better environmentally & usually economically.

If you meet certain criteria (often non-SME size) you will have steps you are required to take by law, notably in the UK Energy Saving Opportunity Scheme (ESOS) audits. 

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