The LEP has launched a new loan fund to fuel a green recovery of the Solent economy and lead the pathway to Net Zero in response to COP26.
The £5M Solent Building Back Greener Loan Fund is now open for applications for loan funding of between £100K and £1M for capital projects which will help accelerate the commercialisation of low-carbon technology, innovations and systems to set the region, and the UK, on the path to a low carbon future.
Councillor Dan Fitzhenry, Chair of the Solent LEP Net Zero Commission and Leader of Southampton City Council, said: "Following clear and urgent calls at COP26 to tackle the impact of climate change in every aspect of our lives, we're re-shaping our funding at the Solent LEP to ensure our region can maximise opportunities to lead the way towards Net Zero and contribute to the critical journey to decarbonisation. The Solent Building Back Greener Loan will support an agile economy that is fit for the future and help build a greener, more innovative, and prosperous economy for all in the Solent.
"By investing in projects to become more cost competitive or scale up, we can ensure low-carbon options are within the reach of many more people and that good ideas become a reality. We're inviting applications for projects that will boost our region's pathway to Net Zero, expand green growth, meet the green skills and training needed by employers, or strengthen the Solent region as a hotbed of innovation."
Applications are being invited from private sector businesses, further education colleges and universities, and social enterprises located in the Solent area. Funding is available for capital projects that can demonstrate a contribution towards achieving Net Zero that can start by the end of June 2022, with a view to being completed by March 2024.
Priority will be given to applications for projects which align with the UK Government's Eligible Green Expenditures to meet the objectives of:
• The Protection and Restoration of Biodiversity and Ecosystems
• Sustainable use and Protection of Water and Marine Resources
• Climate Change Mitigation
• Climate Change Adaptation
The deadline for applications is 14 January 2022.
The Solent LEP is running webinars on 24 November and Wednesday 1 December for those wishing to know more about the funding. Attendance is free and delegates will have the opportunity to learn more about the requirements of the fund, the application process, and any questions they may have will be answered.
Full details of the Loan Fund, including the bidding prospectus and supporting documents to be completed as part of the application process are available here.
Click here to register to attend the webinar on 24 November.
Click here to register to attend the webinar on 1 December.
The Building Back Greener Loan Fund supports the Solent LEP's developing Ten Point Plan for Building Back Greener in the Solent.