New survey reveals UK SMEs missing out on vital energy savings

Small and medium-sized businesses (SMEs) across the UK are missing out on vital energy savings according to a new ScottishPower survey which has revealed only 1 in 10 claim to have decreased their energy consumption over the past 12 months.

The survey - conducted by YouGov - also found that over 60 per cent of SME business owners don’t regard energy efficiency in the workplace as a key priority, while more than half of SME business owners don’t have any active measures in place to try to be energy smarter.

The findings have been released on the back of ScottishPower announcing today (Monday 21 November) that it has joined forces with independent energy efficiency experts, the Carbon Trust, to help more businesses take control of their energy outgoings and make effective savings.

The partnership between ScottishPower and the Carbon Trust will bring to market new energy efficiency tools and an online resource to help more firms improve their energy efficiency, reduce their energy costs and become more sustainable.

Mark Bowen, Marketing Director from ScottishPower, said: “Adopting simple energy efficient measures as a SME business owner may sound easy enough, but as the survey findings highlight the reality is very different.

“Many businesses we talk to admit they could be doing more, but are put off because they believe that steps to incorporate energy efficiency into their business will be time consuming and difficult. We’re keen to work together with businesses and the Carbon Trust as part of this innovative new partnership to understand how we can help break down some of these barriers.

“Making smarter energy choices makes perfect business sense and will help firms to become more sustainable and efficient, while reducing bills which could allow investment elsewhere.”

The YouGov survey of 1,000 UK SME business owners, also found that:

  • Half of all SMEs do not have measures in place to encourage employees to switch off electrical equipment and lights at the end of the working day
  • Two thirds of SMEs do not have a printing policy in place
  • Only 1 in 10 SMEs perform an energy audit each year

According to Carbon Trust many SMEs can easily save 20 to 30 percent on their energy costs through behavioural changes such as switching off equipment and closing windows at the end of the day, at the same time as implementing cost-effective technologies with short payback periods, for example LED lighting.

Richard Rugg, Managing Director of Programmes at the Carbon Trust, said: “Energy saving is an easy win. Cutting money off the bottom line is a great way to increase profitability. But although there is often a considerable opportunity to reduce overheads, in most companies this often gets overlooked. We look forward to working alongside ScottishPower to help their customers understand how to better take advantage of energy efficiency and become more sustainable businesses.”

ScottishPower supplies gas and electricity to more than 250,000 businesses across the country and will work together with the Carbon Trust’s world-leading independent energy efficiency experts to help inform business customers on best practices for being more energy efficient.

ScottishPower wants to put SMEs and their business needs at the forefront of this project and will invite businesses to help develop the online toolkit which will launch in 2017, by registering their interest at

Although the resource will be available for all businesses to view online, ScottishPower SME customers will have exclusive access to a host of personalised energy efficiency content and advice tailored to the individual needs of each business’ industry or sector.

ScottishPower will also sponsor the Carbon Trust SME Network, a free online community providing energy saving advice.


For ScottishPower media enquiries please contact:

Andrew Boocock / Laura Duncan at Stripe Communications on 0131 561 8628, or

Notes to editor

About ScottishPower

ScottishPower is part of the Iberdrola Group, a global energy company and world leader in wind energy. We operate in the generation, transmission and distribution of electricity, and the supply of gas and electricity in the UK to over 5 million customers.

We are committed to leading the development of clean and competitive electricity, modernising electricity networks to improve quality of service and increasing customer choice through digital enhancements.

ScottishPower will invest over £1.4bn in the UK every year for the next five years. As well as investing in the future energy infrastructure of the UK, ScottishPower is creating thousands of jobs as well as hundreds of apprenticeship and graduate positions.

About Carbon Trust

As leading independent energy experts, the Carbon Trust supports businesses, organisations and governments around the world to reduce their environmental impact and find the opportunity in a sustainable, low carbon economy. Since 2001 the Carbon Trust has helped its clients to save £5.5 billion in energy costs and cutting carbon emissions by over 60 million tonnes.

YouGov Survey

All figures, unless otherwise stated, are from YouGov Plc. Total sample size was 571 senior decision makers in SMEs. Fieldwork was undertaken between 15th - 22nd August 2016.  The survey was carried out online. The figures have been weighted and are representative of British business size.