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Our interest-free loans can help Northern Ireland's business community achieve its energy-saving ambitions.

Interest free loans are available to business in Northern Ireland and Wales who wish to invest in energy efficient equipment and renewable technologies. 

If your organisation is based in Wales please click here.

If your business is located elsewhere in the UK, see our Implementation and Finance service.

Since 2003, we've provided over £30million in interest-free loans to hundreds of local businesses, enabling them to reduce their lifetime energy expenditure by more than £100million.

I would like to express my utmost satisfaction to the Carbon Trust for the work it is doing in Northern Ireland. Thanks to a £400,000 interest-free loan, which was in addition to a £1.2million investment in infrastructure, we were able to install equipment that is the first of its kind in the UK and Ireland.
Jarek ZasadzinskiCEO, Greiner Packaging Limited

Eligible companies

  • Any sized private sector business in Northern Ireland can apply for a loan.
  • Public sector organisations are not eligible for interest free loans, but may be eligible for our Implementation and Finance service
  • Incorporated businesses trading for at least 12 months
  • Unincorporated businesses trading for at least 36 months (this will include charities, friendly societies, partnerships, clubs etc.)
  • Businesses with an acceptable credit history
  • Businesses operating in sectors permitted to receive de minimis state aid under the current regulations, and who have not exceeded state aid limits.

EU rules on state aid mean we are not normally able to offer business loans for the acquisition or adaptation of vehicles, to organisations involved in primary production of agricultural products (which includes horticulture, dairy, wine-making – click here for the full list), the fisheries and aquaculture sector, or for export-related activities.  

How much can be borrowed?

Business loans are available from £3,000 - £400,000. The size of the loan will be based on the projected CO2 savings of a project - we offer £1,000 of loan for every 1.5 tCO2 your project is expected to save per annum.  The projected CO2 savings will be independently assessed by the Carbon Trust.     

The repayment period for the loan is then based upon the projected energy cost savings, such that the monthly loan repayment amount is covered by the anticipated energy bill savings, up to a maximum of 4 years.

To see how much a project could save, try our Loan Calculator (excel, 43kb).

Multiple loans are available up to the maximum loan amount.

Which projects qualify?

We can offer £1,000 of loan for every 1.5 tCO2 your project is expected to save per annum.

Many types of project will be considered, provided they meet the on-site fossil fuel saving requirement. Examples of just some of the projects that could qualify include the following:

Building Technologies

  • Air conditioning
  • Heating
  • Heating controls
  • Building insulation
  • Heat recovery
  • Lighting
  • Pipe insulation
  • Solar thermal systems

Industrial Process Technologies

  • Compressed air fittings
  • Motors
  • Materials handling equipment
  • Power factor correction
  • Process heating
  • Process controls
  • Refrigeration
  • Variable speed drives


  • Solar PV and solar thermal
  • Wind turbines
  • Hydroelectricity
  • Heat pumps
  • Biomass
  • Biogas


Many more projects will be considered for a loan and each project will be assessed on its potential to deliver real energy savings. Call us on
028 9073 4398 if you are unsure about whether your project will qualify.

How to apply

Follow these 5 steps to apply for a loan

 Step 1             Check if your organisation is eligible to apply

 Step 2             Check if your project qualifies

 Step 3             Read these guides

Step 4             

Complete the beneficial owners declaration (.docx)

Step 5             

Collate all the documentation referred to in the guides to support your application. This includes completing the Energy Saving Assessment (.xls) Template (ask your supplier for assistance). If you are requesting a loan to fund a power factor correction, spraybooth, voltage management, air compressor, or plastic injection moulding project, please also complete the relevant template below

Step 6               Click here to apply online

Additional documentation for specific projects

If you have any questions get in touch by emailing loans@carbontrust.com or call 028 9073 4398. 


Some of the services we provide in connection with our Interest Free loans scheme are supervised by the Financial Conduct Authority, based at 25 The North Colonnade, Canary Wharf, London E14 5HS.