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Energy efficiency grant

Climate change and cutting greenhouse gas emissions are an ongoing priority for Somerset West and Taunton and Somerset Councils. To achieve the net zero goal by 2050 all households, businesses and other organisations must act to reduce their carbon footprint.

One way to address that is to reduce energy and fuel consumption in our daily operations, which in turn will reduce the cost. As the gas and electricity prices soar, looking at efficiencies and changing habits can save significant amounts of money and cut emissions.

Somerset West and Taunton District Council is opening a new grant scheme aiming to help small and micro businesses start their journey towards net zero where priority will be given to businesses within the West Somerset part of the district. The EDF fund for business support is to mitigate the impact on the local community from the development of two new nuclear reactors at Hinkley Point C on the West Somerset coast.

There are many ways in which businesses can reduce their carbon footprint, from reducing waste (by re-using and recycling) to limiting energy use at night and replacing fuel powered vehicles with electric cars and bikes.

The Council will provide a small grant (up to £2,500) towards improvements or changes that can demonstrate a clear impact on business’ carbon footprint.

All businesses within West Somerset, no matter how big or small, can start acting now to reduce their carbon emissions by calculating their carbon footprint and developing decarbonisation strategy and action plan.

The Council has created a useful guide to help the businesses understand what it means and provide a good starting point to a journey to net zero.

Check if your business is eligible

Priority will be given to businesses based in the West Somerset part of the Somerset West and Taunton District Council area.

To be eligible businesses must:

  • be an independent business
  • employ fewer than 10 people
  • have been operating for more than one year
  • provide two quotes for any proposed spend
  • provide full year’s accounts
  • if feasible provide a copy of your Energy Performance Certificate (EPC)
  • operate from commercial premises (B&Bs, holiday lets, catteries and kennels might be eligible to apply if they can evidence that they are registered with the council as a business)
  • demonstrate the positive impact of the proposed project on their carbon footprint
  • demonstrate deliverability of the projects before end of March 2023

The following interventions provide examples of projects that could be funded through this grant scheme:

  • Heating or lighting controls installation
  • Replacement of equipment to more energy efficient
  • Replacing traditional lightbulbs with LED lighting
  • Waste segregation solutions
  • Electric transport solutions
  • New more efficient glazing
  • Reuse and recycle projects
  • Repairs cafes
  • Staff training
  • Carbon offsetting

The following list provides examples of projects that will not be eligible under this scheme:

  • Providing crisis, cash-flow support or subsidising wages for existing or new staff
  • Paying back business loans
  • Repaying Directors Loans
  • Purchasing stock
  • Funding routine purchases or business outlay, such as rent of existing premises, routine maintenance etc
  • Payments to HMRC for Corporation Tax, Income Tax, VAT, PAYE etc
  • Funding projects that have been completed or are already underway (unless the project represents clearly a next phase or in exceptional circumstances is agreed by the Council)
  • Doubling up of grant funding if other sources of grant are available to fund the project in full

Only one application per business/person/address will be accepted. The scheme will run on a first come first serve basis until all the funds are allocated.

Any interested business should complete an application form which will be assessed by a panel from Somerset West and Taunton District Council. If successful, the applicants will be expected to sign and return an agreement detailing the terms and conditions of the grant.

Successful applicants will be notified by 16 January 2023.

* Please Note – The Council will not be notifying unsuccessful applicants for this grant scheme. Therefore, if you have not heard anything by 16 January 2023 unfortunately you have not been successful. The Local Authority decision is final.

The grant will be paid retrospectively to the applicant upon the presentation of agreed progress reports, evidenced defrayal of expenditure and against agreed timescales. An initial upfront payment may be arranged, this option will be considered on a case-by-case basis.

Any work/costs/matched funding activity that is dated prior to the date of the funding agreement will not be accepted or reimbursed.

Successful applicants will be notified by 16 January 2023.

*Please Note – The Council will not be notifying unsuccessful applicants for this grant scheme. Therefore, if you have not heard anything by 16 January 2023 unfortunately you have not been successful. The Local Authority decision is final.

The grant will be paid retrospectively to the applicant upon the presentation of agreed progress reports, evidenced defrayal of expenditure and against agreed timescales. An initial upfront payment may be arranged, this option will be considered on a case-by-case basis.

Any work/costs/matched funding activity that is dated prior to the date of the funding agreement will not be accepted or reimbursed.

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