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Giving our message power

A busy and productive week drew to a close last Thursday and Friday (13th and 14th of November) with the Scottish Exhibition Show, which took place at the SECC in Glasgow.  The event was particularly significant because it kicked off an exciting new working relationship between Resource Efficient Scotland and ScottishPower.

Iain Gulland - Chief Executive, Zero Waste Scotland | 19 Nov 14

ScottishPower will be promoting Resource Efficient Scotland’s free tools and energy audits to their 225,000 small and medium enterprise (SME) customers, highlighting the range of measures on offer to help them become more energy efficient. This event was the first of a wide range of activities planned over coming months.

This is the first time we’ve worked with an energy provider in this way, and it’s hugely significant.  Resource Efficient Scotland has a clear message – that even simple steps to reduce energy, water and raw material use can have a big impact on the environment and on businesses’ bottom line – and our overarching aim is to spread this message far and wide.  Since launching Resource Efficient Scotland a year-and-half ago, we’ve been doing this successfully, engaging with over 33,000 businesses so far – an impressive track record for a relatively new programme, and suggesting that the appetite is indeed there.  But what about the other 90,000 employers in Scotland?  The challenge remains for us now to pique their interest.

To do this, we need to overcome the time and resource constraints that all too often make it difficult to reach businesses, particularly SMEs, which represent the bulk of the landscape in Scotland.  Teaming up with ScottishPower makes the information available to businesses in a context that makes sense – what better way to consider how to reduce energy use than when engaging with your energy provider?  The focus then is on simple, easy-to-use tools, and bespoke energy efficiency advice.  Resource Efficient Scotland’s one-to-one audits are available to all organisations in Scotland and offer a great starting point to identify changes, big or small.  Free tools like Green Town and the Savings Finder are available and aim to inspire ideas and prompt action, from simple steps like moving sofas away from radiators, to installing a new lighting system.  

Making our offering to businesses is just half the battle.  Going on to identify and implement the savings is the next challenge, and to do this it’s important we stress that resource efficiency isn’t just about ticking a CSR box, it makes real business sense.  Savings on bills, however big or small, make sense – particularly at a time when the Forum for Private Business is reporting that 87% of businesses have seen an increase in their energy bills. The risk of resource scarcity is becoming increasingly apparent, and the economy remains unpredictable.  

It’s apparent that resource efficiency needs to move up the priority list for businesses – it can’t afford not to.  Resource Efficient Scotland is making commendable progress in getting this message across, but we can’t do this alone.  We would welcome the opportunity to work with other organisations to help promote our services and encourage uptake, so please do get in touch and give more power to our message.

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