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Writing Your Net Zero Strategy

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The UK’s 2050 net-zero target is clearly defined, and businesses should be looking to ensure that they have a functional net zero strategy of their own in place to ensure that they are able to play their part in delivering it.

However, faced with such a radical overhaul of your business and operations, it can be difficult to know where to start. For the 71% of businesses that don’t yet have a net zero strategy in place, here we lay out some tips on how to begin and progress your sustainability efforts.

Data is Key

Accurate data on your current sustainability performance and emissions footprint is vital to ensuring that any plans you put in place are robust and practical. It is also vital that you are able to chart the impact that changes have over time. There are a number of carbon emissions accounting methodologies available to give you an accurate understanding of how your business emits carbon and how your footprint changes over time. It is important that your plans for net zero incorporate not just the emissions of your own operations (Scope 1) but also those created by the energy you use (Scope 2) and those of your value chain (Scope 3).

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Achieving net zero is complex and challenging, and requires detailed knowledge that you likely won’t have in-house. It is typically a good idea to engage with an experienced energy partner to help deliver your net zero plan, providing the expertise and infrastructure required to eliminate your carbon footprint.

Set Clear Goals

While the baseline target is to achieve net zero by 2050, you should be more specific when it comes to what you want to achieve, and by when. 2050 may seem far off or inaccessible, but interim targets in the meantime are an important way of focusing in on steps that need to be taken to ultimately achieve net zero. Many sectors have been frustrated by the lack of a clear roadmap from Government to achieve net zero, so it is your responsibility to lay out clear, realistic goals and then progress towards them. Many businesses have laid out interim targets for 2030, which will act as an important measure of progress and give time to course correct if less progress than envisioned has been made.

Your net zero strategy should factor in upcoming legislation, policy changes, new technologies and changes to infrastructure, making it important that your strategy is an ongoing project that evolves as the sustainability landscape changes. Again, it is important to seek out the right advice and expertise to ensure that you are fully aware of how changes could impact on your organisation and to seize new opportunities for improvements.

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Work with your supply chain

Typically, your Scope 3 emissions will be around five and a half times greater than those generated by your direct operations. To achieve net zero, you will need to engage with both upstream and downstream partners to deliver change. Collaborating with partners as soon as possible is vital to delivering an effective net zero strategy, allowing them to evolve and improve their own sustainability rather than bluntly ending a relationship due to a perceived lack of sustainability progress.

Your value chain is just part of the wide range of stakeholders that will increasingly make decisions based on sustainability, which also includes customers, consumers and investors. Delivering a robust, effective net zero strategy will become key to maintaining working relationships with your most important partners, particularly as they themselves will also be looking to address Scope 3 emissions.

Powerstar manufactures and installs a range of energy efficiency and power resilience technologies that can deliver clear and demonstrable improvements to your sustainability performance.

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