Sustainable Business Series 2022: 5 steps to reducing your business carbon footprint


This blog post has been produced for the Greater Birmingham Chambers of Commerce as part of the 2022 Sustainable Business Series.

The Sustainable Business Series seeks to help local firms understand the role that they play in progressing to net zero, as well as the opportunities and challenges that may arise from the net-zero transition. Through an expansive range of blogs, webinars, events and podcasts, the Sustainable Business Series offers useful information to businesses interested in adopting a sustainable business approach.

See the Sustainable Business Series webinar’s and events here.

Globally, 39 countries have now declared a climate emergency; the need to take climate action is more apparent than ever. With SMEs producing ‘up to 36% of total UK emissions’, it is vital that businesses are engaged in helping to build a greener future.[1] Whilst ‘almost half (45%) of UK SMEs’ believe it is important to  lower their emissions in the near future, ‘87% are unaware of their business’s total carbon emissions’.[2] It is clear that there is a disconnect between needing and wanting to improve sustainability and the knowledge need to put it into practice. However, if we are able to empower SMEs with the information they need, we could see significant change not just to industry emissions but the UK’s carbon footprint overall.

Why become a sustainable business?

Going green has many advantages: environmental, financial and social. Becoming a sustainable business can:

  • Reduce energy bills through the use of green technology and implementing sustainable practices
  • Minimise emissions by transitioning to a green energy supplier
  • Attract and retain stakeholders by promoting your commitment to becoming a sustainable business
  • Inspire others in the community to start their sustainability journey
  • Keep a business competitive
  • Help meet future legislations
  • Protect people and the planet

How to lower your business carbon footprint

A business’s carbon footprint is the total amount of emissions produced by its activities. Knowing what to do to reduce your carbon footprint may seem complicated however, you can make a big difference in just a few steps.

  1. Calculate your emissions

The first step you need to take is to understand your current business sustainability. You can use carbon emission calculators to calculate your impact and identify high emitting areas.

  1. Appoint a Sustainability Champion

Choose someone in your team who is passionate about driving change within your business. This person is responsible for understanding and communicating how you can make your business more sustainable. They can conduct audits, contact suppliers, share sustainability tips with colleagues etc.

  1. Transition to a green supplier

Changing to a renewable energy supplier will help reduce the amount of greenhouse gas emissions you emit and decrease the demand for fossil fuels.

  1. Invest in green technology

Purchasing green technology such as LED lighting, energy efficient boilers and EVs, can help reduce your energy consumption. You can find grants and funding to pay for upfront costs.

  1. Support environmental projects

Volunteer with local charities and donate to biodiversity and offset projects that help enhance nature and provide climate change solutions.

Reducing your business’s carbon footprint is a powerful way to make impactful change. SMEs collectively play an crucial role in reducing our overall emissions and creating a more sustainable planet for us all. Want to start your business’s sustainability journey? Zellar, is the UK’s leading sustainability platform and can help your business understand its impact and take climate action. Find out more at

Gary Styles
Founder, Zellar 

[1] Small Business Carbon Emissions Statistics - Small99

[2] 9 out of 10 SMEs don’t know business carbon emissions | NatWest Group