Supporting your business to Net Zero

Supporting your business to net zero banner

Horsham District businesses play a vital part in reducing the District's carbon emissions and improving our local environment. This page contains useful resources and information to help Horsham District businesses on their way to achieving Net Zero emissions.

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Sustainable Business Network

The Sustainable Business Network is a new group of businesses, each developing their net zero programme. It is a network to meet and share their initiatives and experience of moving toward net zero. If you are a large business or organisation in Horsham District and interested in joining the new Sustainable Business Network, please email BusinessDevelopment@horsham.gov.uk

Other Local Authority initiatives

Below are examples of sustainable projects and initiatives at other local authorities. These are a few notable examples (they are not suggestions or HDC approved initiatives).

A case study from Wandsworth Council on the use of  e-cargo bikes for local deliveries.

Regular lighting can be replaced with energy-efficient LED lighting. This switch has been made in HDC car parks.

Some businesses have installed Heat Pumps,  as exampled by Wandsworth Council or Wiltshire Council.

Ask for commitments and support from customers with a campaign highlighting your sustainability, similar to Hampshire County Council.

Check out more initiatives and keep updated at HDC's Climate and Environment News.

Useful links

Glossary of key terms

Core knowledge:

Carbon emissions – The release of CO2 into the atmosphere caused by burning fossil fuels for energy use. The largest GHG contributor to distorting atmospheric concentrations that accelerates the greenhouse effect (IPCC, 2018).

Carbon footprint – The collective GHG contributions of an individual, organisation, community, or country for a select period. Calculated and measured as carbon dioxide equivalent (CO2e) (The Nature Conservancy, 2023).

Greenhouse gases (GHGs) – Gases that absorb infrared radiation to contribute towards the greenhouse effect. The main GHGs include carbon dioxide (CO2), methane (CH4), nitrous oxide (N2O), ozone (O3) and water vapor (H2O). They are by-products of both naturally occurring processes (e.g., decomposition of organic matter) and human-driven activity (e.g., burning fossil fuels) (IPCC,  2018).

The greenhouse effect – A natural process whereby GHGs in the atmosphere absorb and reradiate the Sun’s energy back onto Earth’s surface and into the lower atmosphere. This process acts like the panes of glass in a greenhouse to raise Earth’s temperature. (BGS, 2023).

Sustainability – In the context of the environment, sustainability means operating in a way that meets the needs of the current generation while not undermining future generations to meet theirs (Zero Carbon Business, 2022).

Emissions reduction and removal:

Carbon dioxide removal (CDR) - Techniques that aim to remove carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, by using Negative Emissions Technologies (NETs) and geoengineering. For example, ocean fertilisation, biomass energy with carbon capture and storage, or terrestrial biological sequestration via means such as afforestation (IPCC, 2018).

Carbon reduction - An individual, group, business, or country diminishing their CO2 emissions, principally by switching fossil fuel usage for renewable technologies.

Circular Economy – A system in opposition to a linear production life cycle, that instead targets eliminating waste and pollution, circulating products and materials (at their highest value and regenerating nature (Ellen MacArthur Foundation, 2023).

Offsetting – Investment in sustainable projects globally that intend to balance an individual’s or organisation’s carbon footprint. This concept creates carbon credits which effectively makes emissions a tradable commodity. Each carbon credit equates to 1 tonne of CO2e removed from the atmosphere (Zero Carbon Business, 2022).

Tracking emissions:

Carbon tracking - Organisations can measure their emissions to study their existing sustainability positioning, quantify reductions made over time and set ambition targets.

Carbon Calculators – Tools that help you gauge your own existing carbon footprint. This creates a template to plan and establish targets to continually reduce your impact, as well as guidance on how to do so. We have provided some relevant resources below.

Direct emissions (Scope 1) – GHG contributions from owned and controlled sources.

Greenwashing – An attempt to make others believe that your company is doing more to protect the environment than it really is for commercial gain (Cambridge Dictionary, 2023).

Indirect emissions (Scope 2 and 3) – GHG contributions indirectly from the goods and services that you buy and those outside of direct control. Reducing these emissions involves influencing other organisations and peoples which is why the target date is sometimes longer (Anthesis Group, 2023).

Ambitions and targets:

Carbon Neutral – Generally speaking, ‘carbon neutral’ or ‘net zero’ typically mean the same thing: That some carbon/greenhouse gas emissions remain but are then ‘netted off’ or ‘offset’ through carbon dioxide removal. Such removal may occur due to Negative Emissions Technologies (NETs) such as geo-sequestration or biomass energy with carbon capture and storage, or natural sequestration via means such as afforestation.

Net Zero - the amount of GHGs that are offset and/or removed from the atmosphere being equal to those emitted by an individual or organisation across its whole supply chain (World Economic Forum, 2022).

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