A low-carbon economy is crucial to achieving net zero targets, both within our district and nationwide.

SMEs (Small and Medium-sized Enterprises) account for an estimated 44% of the UK’s non-household emissions – so, businesses have a huge role to play collectively. We are here to help you navigate this challenge.

What does achieving net zero mean for businesses?

It means doing as much as possible to reduce emissions that are produced as a result of business activities. This could start with thinking about how to use less petrol or diesel fuel, generating renewable energy on site, or increasing insulation on buildings.

But it also relates to your supply chain. Who is providing goods and services and what is their carbon footprint like? How much embodied carbon is in new buildings or products being constructed? Are new materials from sustainable sources?  All of these considerations play into a pathway towards net zero and are important to consider during the procurement of goods or services.

It is also vital for businesses and organisations to think about their own direct operations. Are business premises energy and water efficient? Is waste kept to a minimum and disposed of sustainably? Is the vehicle fleet fuel-efficient or even electric?

It is understandable that rising standards in these areas is of concern for local businesses. But there is plenty of help out there to support businesses to play their part in helping Mid Sussex reach net zero, no matter what stage of the journey you are at.

Seeing Net Zero as a business opportunity

Sustainability and climate change mitigation measures are now a key part of ‘futureproofing’ your business. There are benefits to this:

  • Reduced running costs through energy efficiency measures
  • Improved resilience to energy insecurity issues by using more renewable energy, therefore relying less on fossil fuels
  • ‘Green’ credentials can help attract and retain a skilled workforce of people who want to make a positive difference
  • Creating a sustainable supply chain that can supply your business for years to come
  • Driving business growth in a context of rising awareness and funding for net zero credentials

Net Zero Support

  • Solar Together – a local scheme that supports group-buying of Solar PV panels for reduced prices.
  • Let’s Go! Net Zero – This is a new initiative, funded by the West Sussex County and District and Borough Councils, to provide businesses with sustainability advice through county-wide demonstrator events, led by experts and industry peers. The search is on for ‘Green Business Champions’ to help support other SMEs on their net zero journeys.
  • The Green Growth Platform is the Southeast Hub of Clean Growth UK. They work with businesses to support low-carbon and environmental business growth, including through the free Net Zero 360
  • For further business support, check out our Business and Licensing page 

For further support, please see the ‘local support’ section of the following WSCC webpage: Low carbon and green business support - West Sussex County Council

You can also sign up to WSCC’s Green Business Matters newsletter to receive regular updates on all things low carbon and sustainability. Subscribe for updates, under ‘Business and Economy’.

Low carbon business case studies

More and more businesses in Mid Sussex and beyond are taking huge steps to improving their environmental performance.

You can watch this YouTube series which has been put together to showcase great examples of businesses taking strides towards net zero in West Sussex.


Last updated: 21 August 2023