Glasgow council to spend £620k helping businesses go net zero

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More than £620,000 has been approved by Glasgow City councillors for a new scheme to help businesses work towards achieving net zero carbon emissions.

Funding for the Step Up to Net Zero will support small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) with the tools they need to develop and drive forward action plans to maximise value of products, services and systems and minimise waste, within their business.

It will also offer opportunities to upskill and retrain staff while helping businesses in their efforts to reduce their carbon footprint and grow green profits.

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Glasgow City Council made £275,000 from the properties.Glasgow City Council made £275,000 from the properties.
Glasgow City Council made £275,000 from the properties.

The 12-month pilot project will create 40 job placements and provide upskilling and reskilling opportunities both for those who don’t have jobs, as well as those already in work and looking for re-skilling opportunities.

It was approved by the city administration committee yesterday morning which members agreed achieving net zero emissions cannot be done by the council alone.

Council Leader Susan Aitken said: “It needs individuals, households, institutions and perhaps most crucially the city’s business base to establish the role of sustainable practices.

“It is the council’s responsibility to, wherever we can, create the conditions for that to happen. For SMEs this can be very daunting and therefore it is essential that the council help them with that process.”

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Linked to the Glasgow Green Deal mission that was launched during COP26, the project has been designed to demonstrate ways the city can meet the challenge of building a sustainable, circular economy in the face of a climate emergency.

The programme not only aims to support SMEs but also has an employability dimension where staff will be upskilled, reskilled and trained in circularity practices – which ensure sustainability.

Participating SMEs will be assessed through a circle assessment tool to improve current practice, with an action plan developed from this, encouraging the business to adopt more circular practices such as greater use of repair, reuse and remanufacture within their organisation.

They will also be supported by someone placed in the business to drive this action plan forward.

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Following the meeting councillor Susan Aitken said: “Achieving our sustainable ambition for Glasgow needs to be a collective effort, with everyone playing their part. We need our city’s business base to adapt to sustainable practises a part of that effort and the council has a role in helping to create the conditions that will help make this transition possible.

“Evolving to a greener, more sustainable business model can be a daunting prospect for many SMEs and this programme will help by bringing in someone that focuses on this area, has external support through mentoring and training and can really drive forward action for a business.”

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