Case Study

Winchester City Council: Supporting local businesses to become more sustainable

Winchester City Council provide the guidance to local businesses to become more sustainable

Winchester City Council released a tender asking applicants to put together a programme that ensured growth of a prosperous low carbon economy, and reduction of carbon emissions across the district. Carbon Smart was successful in winning this piece of work in 2012 and delivering the programme. Winchester City Council has been actively engaging with businesses across the region to improve their environmental impacts for many years. The programme was put together to engage with businesses to support them to reduce their carbon emissions across all resources year on year.

Kate Cloud, Head of Economy and Arts at Winchester City Council, was keen to boost sustainable business practices:

“Winchester City Council encourages businesses to think green for their own immediate benefit and for their legacy for future generations.  We have a low carbon route map which guides our own practices, and we wanted our business community to do their bit to maintain Winchester District as an excellent place to live, work and visit.”

Carbon Smart Winchester Programme

The main engagement was through the Carbon Smart Certification scheme with Winchester City Council subsidising businesses’ participation and recognition through the scheme. Businesses that took part in the programme had support from the Carbon Smart team to develop action plans that would benefit the longevity of their business through sustainability. Engaging with a workforce to ensure sustainability is embedded throughout the business and providing greater durability to change by reducing resource use and therefore overhead costs. Businesses were also able to meet other like-minded businesses through workshop sessions. These sessions were great for knowledge sharing what businesses are achieving in the region.

The success so far

In the past three years Carbon Smart have engaged with approximately 150 businesses in the region through this programme and, in the first year, certified 110 businesses.
In the second year of the programme, 106 businesses were certified and had environmental support to reduce their carbon emissions and environmental impact. Four businesses successfully achieved the Gold Certification for extensive carbon management and successful carbon reductions. 48 businesses received the Silver Certification for improved carbon management, data quality and successful carbon savings. The Guildhall at Winchester successfully achieved a reduction of 65 tonnes of CO2e in its carbon emissions. This was achieved through replacing lighting with LED equivalents reducing electricity consumption. The Holiday Inn at Winchester successfully achieved a reduction of 67 tonnes of CO2e in its carbon emissions. This was achieved through successful engagement with guests on their sustainability policy and restricting controls on heating and lighting.

To read more about the programme on Winchester City Council’s website, click here.

The programme has been renewed for the second time and is now entering its third year, giving the opportunity to more local businesses to benefit from Carbon Smart’s support.

To find out how businesses are reducing their carbon footprint through the programme, click on the links below.