AN innovative scheme to help firms overcome cost barriers to installing renewable energy systems could encourage more workplaces on Teesside to go green.
Stockton-based AAG Swepco has introduced a leasing system which allows companies to spread the cost of renewable technologies, such as wind turbines and solar panels.
The scheme, backed by ethical lender the Co-operative Bank and others, is the first in the UK to lease multiple technologies.
The company said contracts similar to traditional IT system leases could span three, five or even 10 years, offsetting the often prohibitively high initial outlay while helping companies reduce their energy bills and CO2 emissions.
The lease could be used alongside Government funding streams, including the Low Carbon Buildings Programme, which offers 50% on most renewable energy systems, but only for public-sector businesses.
Funding for the private sector remains scarce, leading to growing frustration among small and medium-sized enterprises and corporate businesses.
AAG Swepco’s business development manager Sean Collier said many clients were keen to implement green measures because of both financial and moral incentives, but were thwarted by the cost.
“Commercial businesses get virtually no help whatsoever. This scheme has come from demand, particularly on Teesside from our industrial clients who typically have high energy bills and are looking at other ways of generating power.
“Renewables are more prominent on Teesside, green energy is championed with the likes of MGT, One NorthEast and Renew.”
It has been calculated that regional manufacturing firms could save £100m by adopting resource efficiency techniques.