Opportunities and challenges for sustainability within SMEs

Sunset over city buildings with solar panels in the foreground.

In our recent blog, we discussed key sustainability trends in 2024, including circular partnerships, digitalization, renewables and climate technologies. Despite there being great innovative waves to transform the economy for the better, large enterprises have an easier time transitioning to sustainable opportunities than SMEs. Some key motivators for this action include:

Financial: In the first half of 2023, sustainable funds saw a median return of 6.9%, beating traditional funds’ 3.8% and reversing their underperformance in 2022.

Hiring Pool: Sustainability initiatives are a top priority for younger generations, 90% of Gen Z and millennials are making an effort to reduce their personal impact on the environment.

Taller Barriers for Smaller Companies

Most smaller organisations agree with the importance of implementing a net zero strategy and climate risk mitigation plan. According to a recent survey by OnePoll, 41% intend to start their net zero journey but face challenges that are hard to navigate without extensive and time-consuming research. These barriers include:

  • Rising costs: Increased cost of resources, materials, and logistics hits smaller companies harder and makes return on sustainable technology investments by SMEs difficult to quantify.
  • Gap in carbon literacy: Understanding the difference in Scope 1, 2 and 3 emissions and how to measure them accurately is important. To do so requires learning a new set of terminologies and concepts to better deliver sustainability projects.
  • Changing regulations: Adapting operations and reporting quickly and correctly in the dynamic landscape of environmental compliance is a continuous and labouring effort.
  • Content overload: There are plenty of sources on sustainability action and planning, but maneuvering the carbon accounting landscape to identify what is the best approach can feel overwhelming.

If any of these barriers resonate with you and your team, then we have created a solution to support SMEs through their net zero journey. The Net Zero Club for SMEs is a consultancy-led, invaluable carbon reduction pathway made bespoke to your organisation’s specific requirements.

We are here to help

Energise empowers companies to achieve net zero. Whether you are new to sustainability or starting from scratch, Net Zero Club for SMEs guides you and your team to discover a net zero plan that is achievable, affordable and just for you.

Making sure we provide more than your average carbon accounting with:

  • Carbon literacy workshop for you and your team
  • Carbon calculation for Scope 1, 2 and 3 emissions
  • Reduction opportunities based on your needs
  • Net Zero target date and tailored action plan
  • Access to our responsible offsets library

Find out more:

Have any further questions? Get in touch with our experts at hello@energise.com and they’ll be happy to help. We also offer a range of social sustainability solutions which can be tailored to your requirements.

Written By    Natasha Carlin

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