The £2m Green Grants Fund, launched today (Thursday 4 May) by Highlands and Islands Enterprise (HIE), is also available to social enterprises in any sector.
The fund aims to address both the cost of doing business and the climate crisis, through measures such as energy efficiency, use of renewables, promotion of active business travel and more environmental waste management.
A series of rural business panel surveys shows the prolonged impacts of Brexit and the pandemic, and the added pressures of increasing costs, are having a disproportionate impact on tourism, creative industries and food and drink businesses.
This is disrupting plans by companies to invest in green technology and in reducing energy costs, which in turn could impact their long-term viability.
The Green Grant Fund, which closes for applications on 14 July, offers grants of £25,000 to £150,000, covering up to 50% of total project costs.
The fund is aimed at small to medium enterprises (SMEs) or social enterprises that have been trading for at least six months and are commercial ratepayers. Applicants are also required to be following Fair Work Principals including paying their employees at least the Real Living Wage.
Projects should include eligible activity that helps businesses reduce or green their energy usage and make progress towards achieving net zero carbon emissions.
Successful applicants will undertake a carbon footprint assessment at the start of their project and provide a projection of the potential carbon savings they’re likely to make. Help to do this is available on the Scottish Business Collaboration website.
Further details here