Industry initiative helps tech services reap benefits of going Net Zero

Tech services businesses can now take action on climate change, thanks to a new initiative built by industry associations techUK, TechNation and BIMA, working with the Good Business Charter and Net Zero Now, the small business climate action platform. The Net Zero Tech Services Initiative makes it easier and more cost-effective for tech services businesses of all sizes to take action on the climate crisis.

The technology industry currently accounts for two to three percent of global emissions, approximately 1.5 billion tonnes of CO2e - more than the country of Japan emits in a single year. With the sector playing a key role in a sustainable future, this enables many more businesses to access the benefits of becoming Net Zero, including customer attraction and staff retention. The Initiative includes:

  • An industry-wide protocol that provides a clear and consistent path for tech  services businesses to reach Net Zero and a common standard against which they can be certified.
  • A dedicated digital platform that supports firms on every step of the journey to calculate their carbon emissions, set targets, get tailored reduction plans and compensate for unavoidable emissions.
  • Trusted Certification Marks to communicate your Net Zero status to clients, employees, and investors.

Becoming a certified Net Zero business can unlock a host of business benefits. With many client companies now setting emissions targets to include required reductions in their supply chain, working towards Net Zero is increasingly important to attract new customers. Data also shows that a majority of younger employees consider a company’s social and environmental commitments before deciding where to work, making Net Zero  a critical recruitment tool.

However, the process of going Net Zero is seen by most SMEs as being expensive, time-consuming and complex5. The Net Zero Tech Services Initiative has been built by the industry, for the industry, to overcome these challenges. 

techUK, TechNation, BIMA and the Good Business Charter led the development of the Net Zero Tech Services protocol, which creates one industry standard for reaching net zero greenhouse gas emissions. The protocol has been peer reviewed by a broad base of stakeholders, representing the sector and sustainability and climate experts, and is aligned with international climate science.

The Net Zero Tech Services platform guides businesses through every step of their journey to certification and includes a free Climate Action Toolkit on how to reduce emissions.

Neil Ross Russell, Managing Director of Net Zero Now, said: “Digital services businesses power so many other business sectors to success. They have an enormous role to play in the transition of our economy to net zero, by reducing their own emissions, influencing their customers in other sectors, and building digital solutions that accelerate the transition.

"Using the Net Zero Tech Services platform, it’s now simple and affordable for businesses to take action on their own greenhouse gas emissions and to share their success with their customers, employees and investors. Developed in partnership with the industry, and underpinned by global climate science, this initiative will transform the sector’s response to the climate crisis, delivering a host of business benefits along the way.” 

Craig Melson, Associate Director for Environment, Climate and Sustainability, techUK said: "Tech innovation will be the solution to the climate crisis, but the tech industry still has a way to go to tackle its own carbon emissions. The Net Zero Protocol is a welcome initiative which provides tech businesses with clear guidelines as to how they can lower their own emissions and reach net zero to create a better future for our planet, society, and economy."

Sammy Fry, Net Zero Lead at Tech Nation, said: "With digital technology alone being responsible for 4% of greenhouse gas emissions, it is a global imperative for the tech sector to focus its attention on decarbonisation. The Net Zero Protocol brings a much needed industry wide consensus as to what net zero means for tech companies, and builds on Tech Nation’s work to ensure all tech companies have access to the tools and resources to actively decarbonise."