LEP commissions Oakdene Hollins to support local businesses with circular economy

26 October 2020
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The York & North Yorkshire LEP through its Growth Hub is investing in a project that will enable 20 small to medium sized (SME) businesses from a variety of sectors in Ryedale to adopt circular economy practices in order to help them become resilient and fit for the future.

This work forms part of the LEP’s strategy and ambition to transform the region to become a carbon-negative, circular economy that benefits business, people and the environment for all people, now and in the future. It also fits with plans to reshape the economy post COVID-19 as greener, fairer and stronger.

Oakdene Hollins, a consultancy who have experience working on pioneering circular economy projects, will deliver this project in partnership with the Circular Malton & Norton network. Initially, businesses will take part in an interactive workshop that will explore how adopting a circular model can benefit a business, with a view to each SME generating a practical action plan that will deliver environmental and financial impact. By exploring this opportunity together, the businesses will be able build a new circular peer-to-peer network in Malton & Norton, increasing collaboration to achieve their ambition to be the UK’s first Circular Market Town.

Following the workshops, the SMEs will work through a self-assessment toolkit and high-level carbon footprinting tool. This will identify their current carbon emissions and provide them with a tailored action plan of what circular ‘next steps’ they should take.

Vivian Shi from Oakdene Hollins explains, “The aim of the project is ultimately to improve the economic resilience of these local businesses whilst reducing their carbon emissions. We want to help businesses grow but want growth that is sustainable and good for all.”

Sue Jefferson, founder of Circular Malton & Norton and member of the LEP’s Business Board comments, “There has never been a more difficult time for businesses, especially SMEs to operate. Brexit and COVID-19 has placed enormous pressure on them. Add to this the increasing demands being made of them to be reduce carbon- footprints and increase sustainability, many businesses are welcoming practical help to deliver a smart way through.

“Through this pilot project, we hope to empower businesses with knowledge about circular economy and how this can be applied to benefit their business in both the immediate and long-term.

“As important, the tool kit and case study examples will be shared by the LEP across Yorkshire so that as many businesses as possible can take advantage as part of their recovery.”

This project will get underway early November, to coincide with Circular Yorkshire Month. This is a campaign being led by the York & North Yorkshire LEP and aims to bring together partners and stakeholders from across Yorkshire to accelerate the region’s transformation towards a circular economy as a way to deliver both financial and environmental benefits.

For more information on this project or to get involved, visit https://www.oakdenehollins.com/sme-circularity

For more information on the Circular Yorkshire campaign, visit www.circularyorkshiremonth.com .

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