Energy supply accounts for 60% of global greenhouse emissions, of which only 17% comes from renewable sources. With global power consumption expected to double by 2050, sourcing energy responsibly will play a vital role in building a sustainable future.
SMEs (Small and Medium sized Enterprises) account for over 95% of all businesses, resulting in a prominent collective impact on the environment. However, they remain limited in their options to decarbonise and implement sustainable practices due to several issues, particularly a lack of time to research and develop an understanding of these socially/environmentally sustainable practices. Furthermore, small businesses often cannot spare the upfront investment costs to implement these strategies, a problem exacerbated by a lack of financial support from banks and stakeholders.
We aim to promote the switch to cleaner energy by supporting SMEs to implement sustainable practices. Our idea is to design an interactive website to allow business owners to easily learn more about their impact on the environment and suggest ways for them to implement sustainable practices. Key features of the website include:
· A calculator to help calculate their emissions – it would factor in different aspects of the business and give them a rating to compare against other SMEs, as well as projected statistics to show how they could reduce their emissions by making certain changes
· Information on the financial support such as grants and incentives available to businesses to reduce their carbon footprint
· Advice on improving social sustainability by using geographical information to show how to help and empower local communities.