The Scottish Government and Zero Waste Scotland have announced a new "cashback" scheme to help small and medium-sized businesses (SMEs) tackle rising energy costs. For a limited time, eligible businesses can apply for an unsecured interest-free loan from the Scottish Government, and receive 30% cashback on the value of the loan, or up to £10,000 in cashback.
Zero Waste Scotland estimate that the average Scottish business could save around £8,000. Businesses will need to demonstrate that they have implemented energy efficiency improvements which not only reduce energy costs, but also lower their overall carbon footprint. Eligible energy efficiency projects include;
Applicants will each receive a dedicated advisor from Zero Waste Scotland at no cost, to help identify energy efficiency improvements, illustrating how the scheme is essentially beneficial to all participating Scottish small and medium-sized businesses (SMEs). Paul Wheelhouse, Scottish Government Minister for Business, Innovation and Energy, said:
“Improving energy efficiency is one of the smartest ways that businesses in Scotland can hold onto their hard-earned profits and make a real difference to the bottom line. In addition to benefits for individual businesses, reducing the environmental impact of Scotland’s energy needs will bring us closer to the low carbon energy future set out in Scotland’s Energy Strategy – generating benefits for Scotland’s economy as well as the environment.”
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On Monday 29th January 2018, T-Mobile announced that they will move to 100 percent renewable electricity by 2021. The telecoms company confirmed that have finalised a contract to source wind power from the Solomon Forks Wind Project in Kansas. T-Mobile already utilise energy from the Red Dirt Wind Power Project in Oklahoma. The two wind farms will generate 60 per cent of T-Mobile's electricity needs. To reach 100% renewable energy, T-Mobile intends to purchase more wind power with the aim of accounting for every "unit of electricity the company consumes".
John Legere, T-Mobile's CEO and President stated that the move to renewable energy will "cut T-Mobile's energy costs by around $100 million in the next 15 years". There will also be corresponding reduction in T-Mobile's carbon footprint. The telecoms group also pledged to donate $500,000 to clean energy non-profit, and also confirmed that the investment in clean energy would increase to $1.5 million, if both the larger U.S rivals Verizon and AT&T match its renewable energy commitment.
T-Mobile have also taken the formal step of joining the RE100, a global initiative comprised of more than 100 influential businesses including Google, Apple, Facebook and Bloomberg, all of which are committed to 100% renewable electricity. Legere said in a statement: “We’re going to drag the other guys kicking and screaming into the clean power future”. This coupled with recent speculation that the U.S may stay in the Paris climate accord, opens the possibility of larger businesses pursuing green energy whilst also making significant savings on energy costs.
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