Who Has the Energy for Another Crisis?
These days, it seems that we have a new crisis every week to add to the pile of stresses of day-to-day life. Following on from the Covid-19 emergency we now find ourselves in the midst of a cost-of-living crisis as well as an energy crisis. As always, we here at EcovisDCA we want to provide our clients and friends with a roadmap to their continued success, so today we have compiled a list of energy supports for businesses, to assist you in making your business as energy efficient as possible so that you can save money as you assist in saving the planet.
Luckily, given the current situation. there are currently a number of government supports available to assist companies in mitigating the exponential rise in energy costs.
Grants & Schemes:
TBESS (Temporary Business Energy Support Scheme):
The most recently published support available to help businesses manage in this energy crisis is the Temporary Business Energy Support Scheme (TBESS). This scheme was introduced in late November as a way to support businesses with increases in energy costs. Qualifying businesses will be entitled to claim 40% of the increases in their energy bills if they have experienced an increase of 50% or more. It is important to note that VAT can not be included as an eligible cost and that all costs must be exclusively for the purposes of the business. If your business operates from the home as many now do, personal usage must be deducted. You can register for TBESS via Revenue Online Services
Energy Audit Support Scheme:
The first step towards Energy Efficiency will often be an Energy Audit. This audit will give a complete overview of the current energy efficiency of your business (including everything from building fabric to the kettles in your staff room) as well as offering suggestions on how this can be improved, and the expected cost benefit of doing so. There are a number of SEAI registered and recommended companies available to complete this audit in order to outline the ways in which your business can become more energy efficient. It is important to ensure that a reputable auditor completes the audit as energy efficiency will naturally become increasingly important in future years. The SEAI currently offer a €2,000 voucher to SMEs towards the cost of an energy audit. https://www.igbc.ie/
Communities Energy Grant:
In terms of the physical implementation of these energy upgrades one of the most beneficial grant avenues may be SEAI’s Communities Energy Grant. There are a number of grant coordinators registered with SEAI who will take on your project from start to finish, as well as engaging with SEAI on your behalf. It is worth noting that you can also utilise the Energy Audit Support Scheme as well as the Community Energy Grant at the same time.
These costs may be somewhat prohibitive to you as a first step in the process, so with this in mind, there are several online digital tools available at your disposal outlined below.
EVs (Electric Vehicles):
SEAI provides funding towards the purchase of Electric Vehicles, as well as funding towards the purchase of EV chargers on a domestic basis. It is worth noting that at present, EVs can also be included in a Communities Energy Grant Scheme application.
EXEED Grant Scheme
The EXEED Grant Scheme – SEAI offers up to €1,000,000 per project for companies planning Energy Efficiency Upgrades.
IGBC – Irish Green Building Council:
The Irish Green Building Council is a fantastic resource for Irish Businesses aiming to learn more about sustainability in business. The website Irish Green Building Council offers a number of free learning courses as well as grant information and incredibly useful resources.
Climate Toolkit 4 Business:
Climate Toolkit 4 Business allows SMEs to get an estimate of their carbon footprint as well as creating a personalised action plan on a very basic level to address this footprint and begin to find methods to offset it.
SEAI Energy Academy
The SEAI Energy Academy offers a number of learning modules free of charge which will help in educating businesses on the importance of sustainability and renewable energies, as well as methods of implementation.
Long-Term Sustainability Planning:
ESG (Environmental, Social and Governance) Plans:
ESG (Environmental, Social and Governance) Policies and Plans are becoming increasingly important to business life and are now a requirement for some forms of bank financing. These are a great method of showing your company’s dedication to sustainability in the long term.
LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design):
Gaining LEED certification is an intensive process which explores all aspects of a building or neighbourhood. This is a rating system used to certify sustainable buildings and neighbourhoods and buildings with LEED certification are considered to be the gold standard of sustainability in the built environment.
There are a great many supports available to assist you in taking your business to the next level in terms of energy efficiency and sustainability, and given the current climate, this will become increasingly important going forward.
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