New guide to local authority grants for green, renewable energy transition

The new resource lists eligibility criteria, application processes and timelines for UK Government grants worth millions. 

a glass jar filled with coins and a plant

Developed by energy experts Geo Green Power, the Business Guide to Funding Renewables assesses the current slew of schemes designed to help with costs tied to upgrades, including the installation of insulation, boiler modernisation, heat pumps and more. 

Among the recommendations is a £185million grant administered by the Department for Energy Security and Net Zero. 12 projects have already been supported through this system, each benefiting from up to £6million to realise low carbon plans. Now expanded significantly, businesses involved in manufacturing and recycling, controlled environment horticulture, industrial laundries, textile renting and more are able to apply. 

The Smart Export Guarantee also features – a national initiative that sees Downing Street pay for excess electricity generated by firms with on-site renewable infrastructure. As does the Farming Equipment and Technology Fund 2024, which offers grants up to £50,000 for agricultural operations, due to open ‘imminently’. 

According to Geo Green Power, just 20% of small and medium sized businesses have invested in green energy solutions, and almost half consider implementation costs to be a major obstacle to becoming more environmentally friendly. The company’s new guide details a number of regionally administered funding options run by local authorities, which are there to offer financial support to businesses in the region. These include: 

  • The Net Zero Grant Programme (NZGP) – Available for small to medium-sized businesses in the West Midlands, specifically within or relocating to Coventry City Council, Birmingham City Council, or Solihull Metropolitan Borough Council areas. The programme provides grants of up to £100K for energy and resource efficiency enhancements, including solar panels, to business premises.
  • The Peak Innovation SME Innovation Grant – Targeted at small and medium-sized businesses in Derbyshire, this grant supports new-to-firm innovation, the adoption of productivity-enhancing, energy-efficient, and low-carbon technologies, as well as facilitating export initiation or growth. Grants range from £1,000 to £10,000.
  • The Rushcliffe AcceleratorAn initiative for businesses across Rushcliffe, Nottingham, this scheme runs until March 31, 2025. The scheme provides support to businesses district-wide, including grant funding to facilitate growth, increase efficiencies and build a sustainable business for the future.
  • Net Zero Business Grants Programme – this scheme offers capital grants of up to £30,000 to install renewables and energy efficiency measures. Grants are available to Community Interest Companies and eligible small and medium sized businesses (SMEs) with a registered trading address within North Somerset.
  • Chamber Low Carbon Grant (North West) – Eligible businesses in Lancashire (excluding Blackpool) can access fully funded support through various UK government-backed programmes. These initiatives cover environmental and energy-saving practices, the development of net zero targets, Carbon Reduction Plans, and guidance on adopting low-carbon technologies.
  • The West Kent Green Business Grant SchemeLocal businesses in the Sevenoaks District aiming to enhance their environmental initiatives or initiate capital projects can benefit from this scheme. The programme offers financial assistance of up to 40% of the total project cost, providing grants ranging from £5,000 to £8,000 based on the nature of the business and project. Applications are open from January 23 to March 13.
  • Net Zero Accelerator projectBeing piloted in the Greater Manchester Combined Authority and the West Midlands Combined Authority, York and North Yorkshire Combined Authority, the £19m programme will help drive investment in multiple green projects across key sectors such as energy, housing and transport – essential to delivering on the UK’s climate targets.

Access the full Business Guide to Funding Renewables

More on energy: 

Energy union: UK electricity grid upgrade will fail on skills shortage

Time running out for UK electricity storage investment

BP boss nets £9.45m in two years, Exxon deflects climate blame

Image: Towfiqu Barbhuiya


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