The UK Government set out their mission to make the UK carbon net zero by 2050. In April 2021, the Government took this one step further, announcing the world’s most ambitious target to reduce emissions by 78% by 2035 compared to 1990.
From central to local government, the public sector is prioritising Net Zero in response to the climate emergency. Yet the challenges associated with decarbonisation cannot be underestimated.
Our research shows upfront cost is the biggest obstacle to implementing net zero strategies. Additional barriers include:
- lack of inter-departmental and stakeholder coordination
- access to affordable and readily available energy efficiency technologies
- limited capacity and experience
- insufficient information about their existing energy performance
Making procurement a force for good
The UK public sector spends around £300bn every year on public procurement. Procurement can be a force for economic, social, and environmental good when used to increase your buying power. Getting the best from your procurement spend allows you to maximise every pound, save time, and redirect precious resources where needed.
Crown Commercial Service (CCS), the UK’s largest public procurement organisation, handled more than £27bn of public sector procurement in 2021/22. We support the public sector in achieving maximum commercial value when procuring common goods and services.
Accelerating your net zero transition
To support the government’s commitment to the United Nations Net Zero 2050 target, CCS created a Carbon Net Zero (CNZ) team to provide customer advice and assistance, supplier training, and employee learning.
We offer 36 commercial solutions (procurement frameworks) in areas that will be key to accelerating your net zero transition. These commercial agreements can help procure low-emission vehicles, greener energy solutions, including heat pumps and solar panels, construction using low carbon materials, refurbishment and maintenance of buildings, energy efficient cloud storage, and help remove single-use plastics from public sector supply chains.
We’ve seen an increase in public sector bodies using procurement for carbon net zero solutions. Here are 4 real-life examples that demonstrate how your buying decisions are accelerating the UK’s net zero transition:
- Bristol City Council used our Traffic Management Technology 2 agreement to support the development of its Clean Air Zone, set to launch in November 2022.
- Loughborough University used CCS to procure a supplier to deliver a 2,000sqm expansion on its science and enterprise park to help decarbonise its estate by 2050.
- 90% of the UK Shared Business Service (UK SBS) energy advisory, design, and technical service procurements were awarded using Heat Networks and Electricity Generation DPS agreement (HELGA).
- Another customer usedHELGA to procure hydrogen advisory services; the project featured a scheme administrator for technical advisory services involving social housing and decarbonisation funds.
Innovative funding options
We know funding net zero projects is a significant consideration when developing plans. To help you tackle upfront costs, we offer innovative options, including our industry-leading twin-agreement solution consisting of a framework for accessing specialist Asset Finance advisors and a funding platform through the Leasing and Loans Dynamic Purchasing System. We also maintain a list of CNZ grants and funding opportunities across the government.
CCS is here to help
No matter where you are on your carbon net zero journey, we can help with decarbonisation across your procurement portfolio. Explore how by visiting our Carbon Net Zero website.