NatWest is to launch a carbon tracking app for SMEs after conducting research which revealed that nine out of ten firms are unaware of their business’s total carbon emissions.
The app, developed in partnership with fintech Cogo, will be piloted with eligible SMEs in the manufacturing and transport sectors, before being more widely rolled out.
NatWest claims that with the right support the UK’s six million SMEs can contribute to up to 50% of the UK’s Net Zero decarbonisation goals by 2030 worth an estimated £160 billion in revenue.
SMEs will be able to use the app to review their transactions and estimated carbon footprint, see their estimated emissions over time, and compare them month-on-month. The app also suggests ways that SMEs may be able to reduce carbon emissions and learn more about the support available to help them go greener.
The SME pilot follows the successful rollout of the carbon footprint tracking feature to retail customers last year. NatWest says that more than 150,000 retail customers have used the app since launch in November 2021.
Andrew Harrison, head of business banking, NatWest Group says: “We know many SMEs are unsure about where to start on their sustainability journey, and many don’t have the time or resources needed to understand their environmental impact.
“Opportunities exist across all sectors of the economy, but the transport, agriculture, and industrial sectors provide the most urgent and immediate positive business cases."
The release of the carbon tracking app follows last month's launch of NatWest's Climate Hub, which enables eligible SMEs - investing in clean buildings, energy, transport, and agriculture - to access information on how to apply for green loans and green asset financing.