A survey by the British Chamber of Commerce and British Gas shows that UK businesses want the government to do more to accommodate the cost of the introduction of energy efficient measures into work environments.
Of the 2,100 companies surveyed, 36% of them said they felt that the introduction of grants to help with the cost of fitting new energy efficient measures would be the most significant measure the government could make. Financial aid was favoured by 43% in the manufacturing sector, while 19% of businesses felt tax breaks could be the solution.
However, a lack of funds and a lack of available information were also cited as reasons for not investing in energy efficiency measures at work.
Commenting on the survey, Director of Research and Economics at the British Chambers of Commerce, Mike Spicer, stated:
“These results demonstrate that getting the economics of investment right for energy efficiency is crucial to promoting take-up. At a time when businesses face growing upfront cost pressures from other sources, grants and tax breaks have an important role to play in offsetting the cost of new energy efficiency measures. On its own, more information won’t do the job.”
The government has targets in place and it is keen to improve energy efficiency where it can in order to improve fuel security in the future and lower pollution. However, while energy use in industry has declined in recent years, many firms have still be left not knowing the best approach in order to make efficiency savings, or they are concerned the measures they adopt will not deliver the promised cost savings.
Many of the companies surveyed felt they hadn’t benefitted from changes in the wholesale gas prices. Of those surveyed, approximately 36% stated that the fall in wholesale prices had yet to be reflected in their energy bills, while 37% had noted little change in the price they pay for energy, despite the fall in wholesale prices.
According to the survey, micro-businesses have been impacted the most with 74% of them stating that there had been either no change or just minor changes in the cost of their bills.
Energy Efficiency and the Manufacturing Sector
In the manufacturing sector, firms seemed less concerned with greater energy efficiency; their main focus is investing in the maintenance and enhancement of their manufacturing facilities. However, the number one reason for not making investment in energy efficiency was the concern that it wouldn’t deliver the promised energy savings.