Small Business

What’s happening now

Almost all the emissions associated with small businesses comes from electricity consumption.

For most businesses, their primary energy demand arises from heating and cooling systems, followed by lighting. Offices tend to have a significant energy consumption related to computers and servers. Whereas businesses like restaurants and supermarkets exhibit substantial energy usage from commercial fridges.

Numerous businesses are taking steps to enhance their energy efficiency to reduce electricity and gas expenses. There are some local, state, or federal government programs that can support businesses in implementing these upgrades.

Businesses play a crucial role in supporting our community’s decarbonisation efforts. Emissions from small businesses are generally decreasing in the electricity sector as more renewable energy sources are integrated into the grid, and business owners become more aware of the cost savings associated with efficient electric appliances. Western Power is modernising its network to a modular grid in readiness for an electrified future and is supporting businesses to integrate their electrification investments into the grid and electricity market.

While many of the anticipated climate change effects may have only a limited direct impact on small businesses in the region, they could influence supply chains and larger economic factors.

Carbon Emissions from Small Business

The total annual emissions (total = 82100 tCO₂e, 21/22) within the commercial sector for the South Coast region, separated by the main business subsectors. Hover over the donut to see the emissions for each subsector. Source:

Sector action impact

Many of the solutions for reducing emissions from small business are cheap and cost effective. It is possible for individual businesses to reduce their effective emissions to zero through energy efficiency, sustainable power purchasing, and planning transitions to electric vehicles. Overall businesses in the region may reduce emissions by over 50% above baseline estimates by 2050

Projected Emissions for Business as Usual vs Action for Small Business

Emissions projections from businesses for the South Coast region from 2022 to 2050. The red line indicates the projected emissions if businesses were to continue Business as Usual. The green line shows the potential reduction in emissions if all business-related actions on this website are implemented. Source: South Coast Alliance Regional Net Zero Plan – Ironbark Sustainability 2022

Opportunities for Action

Small business have a host of services and advice available to them about how to take action. Delve into the individual actions within this sector for more information.

Projected Impact of Actions for Small Businesses

The estimated impact on carbon emissions from business actions for the South Coast region from 2022 to 2050. Hover your cursor over the bars to see how different business actions can reduce emissions each year. Source: South Coast Alliance Regional Net Zero Plan – Ironbark Sustainability 2022