We are Not Important to Climate Change, say Small Firms
Small businesses do not believe they have as significant a role to play in reducing carbon emissions as households, big business and the public sector, research from energy supplier npower has found.
The annual Business Energy Index survey asked 200 small firms how they rated their influence in cutting carbon emissions. On average they ranked their importance at 5.1 out of a maximum score of 10. They rated households’ importance at 6.8, large businesses’ at 7.7 and the public sector’s at 8.1.
The research also highlighted that 97% of small firms said reducing costs was more of a priority than reducing emissions. In addition, 52 per cent said the economic climate was reducing their ability to reduce their carbon footprint — up from 47 per cent a year ago.
“As we come out of recession it’s no surprise that businesses are relegating emission reduction in favour of managing costs, but it’s important that they do not ignore the importance of reducing carbon in the long term,”
said npower Energy Services spokesman, David Titterton.
The British Chambers of Commerce’s senior policy adviser, Gareth Elliott, said the survey results had to be tempered by the fact that we’re just coming out of recession.
“Many small businesses are doing something to assist in reducing their emissions, even though they’re doing it while trying to reduce their bottom lines.”
“Our Reconnecting Britain survey, published this month, found that seven out of ten chamber members introduced energy efficiency measures in the past 12 months.”
“We would urge the Carbon Trust to refocus on small businesses. Currently it’s very focused on large businesses, but they already have many of the skills and knowledge in-house. Small businesses have limited knowledge and resources and they need help and assistance.”
“Small changes are important. As much as people laugh at things such as turning off light and computer monitors, collectively they can make a big difference.”