Energy efficiency: advice and support for industry

A list of advice and support available to industrial users in Scotland seeking to improve their energy efficiency (updated October 2021).

Scottish Government funds and sponsored programmes

Scottish Industrial Energy Transformation Fund (SIETF)


Scottish Industrial Energy Transformation Fund (SIETF)

Lead organisation: Scottish Government       

Aim / purpose: Support Scottish manufacturing industries to transition to a low carbon future and to reduce energy costs and emissions through increased energy efficiency and deeper decarbonisation.     

Type(s) of project: Deployment of readily available energy efficiency technologies, or deeper decarbonisation projects such as fuel switching.   Feasibility and engineering studies into industrial energy efficiency or deeper decarbonisation technologies.

Eligibility: Individual or consortium bids where the lead applicant must be a UK-registered business of any size that operates an industrial site in Scotland, with an eligible SIC code:

  • manufacturing 10000-33200
  • data centres 63110
  • mining and quarrying 05101-05200; 07100-08900; 09900
  • ecovery and recycling of materials 38320      


  • £34 million available to provide match-funded grants over next 5 years, 2021-2026
  • deployment projects: minimum grant award of £100k
  • feasibility studies: minimum grant award of £20k
  • engineering studies: minimum grant award of £40k
  • % co-funding dependent on size of business

Timing: Funding profiled between 2021 and 2026.

  • first call closed to applicants in Feb 2021
  • second call will launch in Oct 2021 and will be open to applicants until 17 Dec 2021

Contact / Links:    

Low Carbon Infrastructure Transition Programme (LCITP)


Lead organisation: Scottish Government, in partnership with Scottish Enterprise, Highlands & Islands Enterprise, Scottish Futures Trust, Zero Waste Scotland and sector specialists.

Aim / purpose: Offer expert advice and financial support to aid delivery of substantive private, public and community low-carbon projects across Scotland. LCITP offers support for projects to develop investment-grade business cases and can provide capital finance support to help projects deliver low carbon benefits across Scotland. 

Type(s) of project: Project areas include low-carbon electricity/heat, energy storage/distribution, heat recovery, hydrogen etc.

Three project stages supported:

  • catalyst (feasibility work/ outline business case)
  • development (investment-grade proposal)
  • demonstrator (capital support to demonstrate commercial viability)      

Eligibility: Well-defined infrastructure projects only – site, technology and end user(s) identified. Projects must demonstrate potential for significant GHG reduction, significant social and economic impact, significant value-added from programme support, and ability to attract other sources of funding. Cross-sector collaboration and community engagement are desirable.

Funding: 40% European Regional Development Fund (ERDF), 60% Scottish Government.  LCITP projects are supported on a co-funded basis:

Public/private sector projects: 50% (LCITP), 50% (Project).

Community-led projects: 80% (LCITP), 20% (Project).      

Timing: As the current LCITP programme draws to a close in 2021, we are developing a successor programme as the primary mechanism for deploying zero emissions heat at scale, co-ordinating our support for the roll-out of heat networks and heat infrastructure. We will invest £499 million over the next 5 years in large-scale heat decarbonisation infrastructure.          


Notes: LCITP project team can advise projects on the need for development support to increase readiness for funding.

Business Energy Scotland - Make Your Business Greener


Business Energy Scotland · Make Your Business Greener

Lead organisation: Energy Saving Trust, on behalf of the Scottish Government

Aim / purpose: Provide free and impartial support and access to funding to help businesses save energy, money and reduce carbon emissions.

Type(s) of project: Free one-to-one support from specialist advisors, including:

  • free energy opportunities assessment to identify energy efficiency and renewable heat measures
  • comprehensive report highlighting key actions to be taken for energy efficiency and renewable heat measures, as well as signposting major changes and how to access support, further advice, and financing​​​​​

Eligibility: Available to Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs), not-for-profit organisations, and charities in Scotland.

Funding: Funding opportunities include the SME Loan and Cashback Scheme.

Timing: Ongoing

Contact: Fill out the contact form on the Business Energy Scotland website or call 0808 808 2268

Note: Advisors have already identified over £200 million worth of savings for Scottish businesses with an average energy saving identified of 24% per business.

SME Loan Fund


SME Loan and Cashback Scheme (Previously SME Loan Fund)

SME Loan Scheme · Business Energy Scotland

Lead organisation: Energy Saving Trust on behalf of the Scottish Government

Aim / purpose: Provide interest-free loans and cashback grants to Scottish businesses to finance the installation of renewable heating systems and energy efficiency measures, in order to reduce energy costs and cut carbon emissions.

Type(s) of project:

  • renewable heating systems
  • energy efficiency measures
  • building fabric upgrades
  • LED lighting systems
  • micro-renewables

Eligibility: Small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), not-for-profit organisations, and charities in Scotland.

Further information on eligibility and funding available.


  • loans of up to £100,000 available through the SME Loan Scheme
  • cashback grants of up to £30,000 available through the SME Loan and Cashback Scheme
  • SMEs can access a maximum of £130,000 through the combined schemes​​​​

SMEs could receive cashback grants of:

  • 75% of eligible costs, up to a maximum of £10,000 for renewable heating systems
  • 75% of eligible costs, up to a maximum of £20,000 for energy efficiency measures

Timing: Ongoing

Contact/links: Contact Business Energy Scotland

  • for a relevant bespoke energy assessment, contact Business Energy Scotland
  • for more information and to apply for the SME Loan and Cashback Scheme, contact Energy Saving Trust

Note: Since 2008, the SME Loan Scheme has provided over £50 million in financial support, funding more than 2,000 projects and achieving estimated lifetime savings of over £65 million. The scheme aims to support Scottish organizations in implementing energy-efficient and renewable technologies to increase economic competitiveness and reduce carbon emissions.

District Heating Loan Fund


District Heating Loan Fund

Lead organisation: managed by the Energy Saving Trust on behalf of Scottish Government.

Aim / purpose: Provide capital loans to help address financial and technical barriers to district heating projects.    

Type(s) of project: District heating networks with low carbon or renewable technologies.

Eligibility: Local authorities, registered social landlords, small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) & energy service companies (ESCOs) with less than 250 employees.   

Funding: Unsecured, low interest loans with repayment over 10 or 15 years. Projects >£500k will be considered on a case by case basis. Loans  >£1m may involve co-investment with range of funding partners.

Timing: To be considered for this year’s funding round download the expression of interest form

Contact/links: send completed form to

Notes: Since 2011, £20 million has been lent to 53 different projects across Scotland.

Energy Measurement and Quantification (EMQ)


Lead organisation: Delivered as part of the Zero Waste Scotland Energy and Low Carbon Heat programme

Aim / purpose: Consultancy support to map energy use and waste heat streams then identify / appraise opportunities for heat recovery / energy efficiency savings / heat supply decarbonisation. Support in high-level appraisal and technical feasibility, to progress to funding programmes.         

Type(s) of project

Stage 1: Energy Measurement & Quantification – site wide enery mapping and opportunity identification / appraisal

Stage 2: Opportunity development – project focused, further exploring feasibility

Eligibility: Large industries with potential for heat recovery opportunities. Candidate sites identified by delivery contractor, specialist staff or referral by partner organisations (e.g. enterprise agencies).    


Stage 1: 10-15 days of specialist consultancy provided to produce a report.

Stage 2: Funding flexible subject to programme resource.         

Timing: Ongoing


Enterprise or regulatory agency programmes or services

For further information on business support services from across the Scottish public sector, visit Find Business Support

Scottish Manufacturing Advisory Service (SMAS)


Scottish Manufacturing Advisory Service (SMAS)

Lead organisation: Scottish Enterprise (SE), in partnership with Highlands and Islands Enterprise (HIE).

Aim / Purpose: Improve productivity and increase investment in the manufacturing sector by supporting innovation and the adoption of new processes and technology.

Type(s) of project: Expert advice, one-to-one support, training and events to help businesses improve efficiency, adopt digital technologies, identify supply chain opportunities and build sustainable change.

Eligibility: All businesses. Flexible, responding to individual needs.

Funding: Initial operational review fully funded by SE/HIE.

Timing: Ongoing

Contact/Links: General enquiries.  Or call 0300 013 3385.

Notes: over 550 operational/ asset reviews carried out since 2016. Over 200 asset audits carried out.

Scottish Enterprise - sustainability support


Scottish Enterprise – Sustainability Support

Lead organisation: Scottish Enterprise (SE)

Aim / purpose: Build international competitiveness and deliver long term inclusive, sustainable economic growth.

Type(s) of project: One-to-one bespoke support for businesses to improve efficiency and competitiveness while reducing impact on the environment.

Eligibility: Companies of all sizes across all sectors. Flexibility is key and SE is always open for discussion with businesses on ideas

Funding: Advice and support service. SE core funding.

Timing: Ongoing

Contact/links: Sustainability enquiries Or call 0300 013 3385.

Notes: Business Improvement Expert support can also be accessed via Sustainability Specialists.

Highlands and Islands Enterprise - regional focus support


Highlands and Islands Enterprise – Regional Focus Support

Lead organisation: Highlands & Islands Enterprise (HIE)

Aim / purpose: Generate sustainable economic growth. Creating conditions for a competitive and low-carbon region.

Type(s) of project: Businesses and social enterprises. Developing growth sectors, particularly distinctive regional opportunities.

Eligibility: All businesses. Flexibility is key and HIE encourages early engagement

Funding: Advice and support service. HIE core funding.

Timing: Ongoing

Contact/Links: General enquiries.  Or call 01463 245245.

Notes: HIE priorities (like SE) include digital enablement, innovation and productivity.

South of Scotland Enterprise - business support


South of Scotland Enterprise – Business Support

Lead organisation: South of Scotland Enterprise (SOSE)

Aim / purpose: Drive growth, increase competitive-ness and tackle inequality in the South of Scotland. Establish the region as a centre of opportunity, innovation and growth.

Type(s) of project: Provides investment, expertise and mentoring to people and businesses, including low carbon/net zero expert support. Support is tailored to individual circumstances.

Eligibility: All businesses, social enterprises and communities in the South of Scotland, who have an idea or need support.

Funding: Advice and support service. SOSE core funding.

Timing: ongoing

Contact/links: General enquiries.  Or call 0300 304 8888.

Notes: Low Carbon/ Net Zero expert support can be accessed via SOSE Specialists and advisors

Sustainable Growth Agreements (SGA)


Sustainable Growth Agreements (SGA)

Lead organisation: Scottish Environment Protection Agency (SEPA)

Aim / Purpose: Help Scottish organisations become leaders in sustainability, championing the benefits of environmental excellence.

Type(s) of project: Voluntary formal agreements between SEPA and an organisation(s) that focus on practical action to deliver positive environmental outcomes. SEPA can help organisations collaborate with experts, innovators and stakeholders to achieve environmental, commercial and social success.

Eligibility: Organisations of any size, including individual businesses, groups of businesses, trade bodies, local authorities, NGOs. Compliance with environmental regulation required as a minimum, with a view to setting ambitious ‘beyond compliance’ targets.

Guiding Principles for SGAs.

Funding: SGAs are agreements or strategy documents.

Timing: Dependent on engagement.


Promotion also through the VIBES awards.

UK programmes

To avoid duplication of information on UK Government funds, refer to BEIS: Funding for low carbon industry  which provides information on further funding programmes. For further information contact:

Information on other UK funds which may be relevant to Scottish businesses is detailed below. For further information on UKRI administered funds, all open and upcoming including calls, refer to: UKRI Funding Finder

ISCF Industrial Decarbonisation Challenge (IDC)


ISCF Industrial Decarbonisation Challenge (IDC)

Lead organisation: UK Government (BEIS), managed by UKRI. Part of the UK Govt.’s Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund (ISCF).

Aim / purpose: effective decarbonisation of industry by developing & deploying low-carbon technology & infrastructure, whilst ensuring industrial competitiveness. Will support delivery of the Industrial Clusters Mission

Type(s) of project

Planning, development and deployment of large-scale, transformative low-carbon technology and infrastructure projects for UK industrial clusters. Three work streams:

  • roadmaps
  • deployment
  • Research and Innovation Centre (IDRIC)

Eligibility: Collaborative, business-led projects focused on decarbonisation of UK industrial clusters. Only projects successful in Phase 1 were eligible to apply for Phase 2.

Funding: £170m public funding (+ £260m matched investment) allocated across the three work streams.

Timing: Phase 1 closed in Dec 2019.  Phase 2 closed in mid-2020.  No further calls expected


ISCF Transforming Foundation Industries (TFI) Challenge


ISCF Transforming Foundation Industries (TFI) Challenge

Lead organisation: UK Government (BEIS), managed by UKRI. Part of the UK Govt.’s Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund (ISCF).

Aim / Purpose: Transform Foundation Industries so that they are internationally competitive in manufacturing products vital for our economy in an environmentally sustainable way.

Type(s) of project

Four work streams:

  • Industry-led innovation and collaborative R&D
  • Academic community building
  • Academic-industry tech. transfer collaborations
  • Late-stage finance for fast moving start-ups

Eligibility: Academic & industrial research, feasibility and demonstration projects focused on eligible UK foundation industries: ceramics, glass, cement, paper, metals and bulk industrial chemicals (not pharmaceuticals).

Funding: Up to £66m available funding across various competitions.

Timing: Various calls throughout 2021. See UKRI Funding Finder for more details


Industrial Energy Efficiency Accelerator (IEEA)


Industrial Energy Efficiency Accelerator (IEEA)

Lead organisation: UK Government (BEIS), delivered by The Carbon Trust.

Aim / Purpose: Support partnerships between developers of energy and resource efficient technologies and industrial companies willing to demonstrate the technologies on site.

Type(s) of project: At-scale demonstrations of novel energy/resource efficiency technologies at UK industrial sites, with a focus on innovations with large cross-sector energy saving and carbon reduction potential.

Eligibility: Open to projects from all UK industry sectors that can demonstrate either a novel technology (TRL 5-8) or the use of an established technology in a novel way.

Funding: £8 million will be available to fund demonstration projects.

Successful applicants can typically expect to receive 40-60% funding for their project.  IEEA contributions typically between £150k and £1 million per project. The remainder is to be funded by the applicant(s).

Timing: IEEA Phase 3 will open to applicants in mid-Oct 2021 and is expected to close on 31 Jan 2022.

Contact/Links:  Or call 0207 170 700

Industry of Future Programm


Industry of Future Programme

Lead organisation: UK Government (BEIS).  Part of the UK Govt.’s Net Zero Innovation Portfolio.

Aim / purpose: Increase the range of options available to industry to enable them to decarbonise at a faster rate. Aims to work with industry to understand what is required to make sites retrofit-ready by assessing the feasibility of new equipment.

Type(s) of project: UP to 40 industrial sites can apply for funding to develop industrial decarbonisation roadmaps. Initial funding will be used for scoping studies, with follow-up activities defined at a later date. Scoping studies include identification of optimal decarbonisation options, installation of technologies and testing of technology solutions.

Eligibility: UK-based industrial sites with annual emissions over 10,000 tCO2e (Scope 1 & 2) per site.  Open to all industrial sites and data centres which meet the emissions threshold, except: Production of Electricity (SIC 35110); Extraction of Natural Gas (SIC 06200); Extraction of Crude Petroleum (SIC 06100).

Funding: Roadmaps will be developed by a delivery partner, procured under a separate competition. Their costs will be fully met by BEIS.  The only costs to applicants for development of the roadmaps will be in the form of staff time to support the delivery partner.

Timing: Registration deadline extended to 14 October 2021. Application deadline extended to 29 October 2021.

Contact/Links: Find out more and apply




Central Enquiry Unit
Phone: 0300 244 4000

The Scottish Government
St Andrews House
Regent Road


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