Although there are green incentives which large firms are using to their advantage, going green is not an option according to the majority of small firms surveyed in the UK. This is largely due to high taxes and the lack of availability of green incentives that tend to be available to larger firms.
The survey was conducted by the Forum of Private Business and even though the majority of those surveyed said going green was not impossible, they held that it was impractical from a business perspective. Even though transitioning to sustainable power, purchasing energy efficient equipment and cutting costs by streamlining operations for efficiency would ultimately save them money, there are not enough government incentives to help them foot the cost.
According to the survey, 75% of small firms interviewed felt that green incentives were not equitable as they were ‘geared towards larger firms.’ Also, most of the small firms even admitted to taking whatever steps they could to reduce energy consumption, the savings just weren’t there. With more equitable incentives, these small firms said that making the switch would be possible.
Greater than 50% of those surveyed felt that they were not in a financial position to be environmentally friendly and would not be in a good position until their bottom lines were higher, giving them increased profitability. Part of the problem is also the fact that there is a lack of information available to help small firms understand what they can do to reduce power usage and become more environmentally friendly.
The bulk of the problem is in the lack of green incentives, as they see it, but another large issue is that there has been a gap in communication as to what is out there for them. According to the FPB chief executive, small businesses should be at front and centre when providing incentives to go green.