Supporting Lancashire’s SMEs with the Low/Net Zero Carbon Agenda

Project overview

Burnley College’s exciting project centred around the creation of a Low Carbon Hub at its £100 million Campus to support small and medium-sized businesses across the county to engage with the low/net zero carbon agenda, securing their future – and the future of the planet.

The project delivered expert training in the related fields of behavioural change, energy management and technology and monitoring solutions to ensure employers have the skills and knowledge needed to thrive in a business world with an increased focus on sustainability and preserving our resources for future generations.

An Introduction to the Supporting Lancashire’s SMEs with the Low/Net Zero Carbon Agenda Project (Video)

Delivery partnership

The project was delivered in partnership with Blackburn College who focused on green energy solutions; West Lancashire College with the spotlight on emerging hydrogen technologies; and Lancaster and Morecambe College whose key focus was on sustainability within the construction industry.

Project aims

The overall aim of the project was to support Lancashire’s Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs) to understand and engage with the low/net-zero carbon agenda and to respond effectively to the threats and opportunities presented to their business through the development of a low carbon strategy and action plan.

The project aimed to ensure that Lancashire businesses lead the Green Revolution, just like their predecessors did the Industrial Revolution, through:

  • Training on behavioural change – supporting cultural change in the workforce and community to take collective ownership of sustainability plans.
  • Energy Management – supporting training and development opportunities for middle and senior managers to fully understand energy management and how to best explore green solutions within business.
  • Technology and Monitoring Solutions – support for the retro fit of monitoring technology, research opportunities for efficient solutions to meet future demand.

A Low Carbon Hub was created at Burnley College to act as a focal point for business training and innovation, being recognised as a centre of excellence through its state-of-the-art technology and facilities and the expertise of its Tutors and Trainers in the field of sustainability.

Burnley College, Blackburn College, West Lancashire College and Lancaster and Morecambe College offered bespoke training packages to ensure that all employers received the individual advice, guidance and support needed to empower them to see real change in their business.


The project identified collaborative and innovative ways of working with small and medium-sized businesses; identified their individual training needs and ensured they had a full understanding of the low/net zero carbon agenda, as well as implications for their business.

It created a hub of expert staff, accessible to all partners, to enable co-delivery elements where necessary and provide invaluable specialist knowledge to all partners.

“The Pilot really links up the local business community with the low carbon agenda and encourages best practice in a way which will boost productivity and growth. Since becoming involved, PM+M has provided a range of support to participating businesses, including guidance surrounding the tax treatment of electric vehicle use, capital allowances and R&D tax credits, proving that the programme is not just about saving the planet but that it makes business sense too.”

Neil Welsh, Financial Planner and Business Development Manager, PM+M

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