The launch of the Public Sector Decarbonisation Scheme last week presents an opportunity for public sector organisations to reduce their emissions using government funding. Organisations should begin formulating applications now to have the best chance of being funded.
Subsidising Energy Efficiency
Salix Finance is backing the scheme and it combines two major funds. First, the Capital Grant Scheme (CGS) aims to support heat and electricity decarbonisation efforts in certain public sector buildings. The second will help create thousands of jobs within the green development sector.
Under the CGS, public sector bodies can apply for financing for up to 100% of the costs of capital energy-saving projects fitting certain criteria. The criteria are split into four categories, which, in tandem, take a holistic view of decarbonising building heating.
This scheme will act as a non-domestic version of the Green Homes Grant, helping to address the carbon footprint of heating in UK commerce and public bodies.
Since applications to the fund will be subject to Salix’ discretion, organisations must have a robust understanding of their current energy expenses as well as accurate means to estimate the savings they stand to make.
The technologies supported by CGS are all focused on driving down the CO2 emitted in building heating. Naturally, low-carbon heating solutions like heat pumps and heat networks are deemed eligible.
Technology able to reduce heat demand or offset energy from the National grid also qualifies. Solar PV, battery storage, and metering systems fall under this category.
Window closing fast
Organisations can use this fund to subsidise the cost of external support for decarbonisation projects in a variety of ways. This includes the employment of technical expertise in putting together applications for the fund, support for project delivery, and guidance on creating a long-term decarbonisation plan.
However, applications must be submitted by the 11th of January and any planned projects delivered by the end of March 2021. Organisations should take this timeline into account when considering the scale of any project they wish to undertake.
Four months is a considerably small window for an infrastructural overhaul. That means organisations with a decarbonisation framework already in place will have a head start over those that don’t.
However, that is all moot unless applications are in before the deadline in just over ten weeks’ time. It is important to note that the scheme has been open since September 30th and that there is no ceiling on how much of the fund individual projects can apply for.
£1bn might sound like a lot, but it is still finite and approvals are on a first-come, first-served basis.
Organisations are already in a race against time and will want to start approaching sustainability specialists as soon as possible.
At EIC, our 360° Strategic Review offers a variety of channels through which you can boost your decarbonisation efforts. Key amongst these is a focus on implementing appropriate infrastructure for your organisation. A comprehensive solution that includes sub-metering, lighting solutions, on-site solar generation and CHP.
For further information on how we can support your decarbonisation journey, contact us.