Adapt your business to climate change

How will climate change affect my business?


The changing climate will bring many challenges for society and business, some which are known now and some which it may be difficult to predict.

Impacts of climate change on business

Climate change is likely to directly impact your business in a number of ways:

  • extreme weather and more variable weather
  • more flooding events
  • water restrictions
  • supply chain disruption or collapse
  • government mitigation measures

Unpredictable weather can affect your business directly, for example by increasing the risk of water shortages or flooding. This can cause significant disruption to your business and make it more difficult to get insurance. You should take some time to understand how to protect your business from flooding.

Your business may also be affected by measures imposed by the government to help meet greenhouse gas reduction targets. These measures include:

  • the Climate Change Levy - a method designed to improve your business' energy efficiency. You may already pay this levy as part of your energy bills. You can reduce the amount of levy you pay by cutting the amount you use and switching to renewable energy.
  • climate change agreements - if your business is in an energy-intensive sector you may be eligible for a reduction in the climate change levy by meeting energy reduction targets.
  • emissions trading and reporting - if your business is in one of the energy-intensive sectors covered by the scheme, you must report and meet targets to reduce your greenhouse gas emissions, or take part in a voluntary reporting scheme.

Reducing your emissions can bring other benefits, such as lower energy bills and improving the way stakeholders view your business. You may also be able to take advantage of related tax breaks.

The most effective way of cutting your carbon emissions is likely to be by using a systematic approach to managing emissions reduction, such as by using an environmental management system.

You can aim to lessen the impact of your business activities on climate change by becoming a net zero business.

Get a free sustainability report

All Northern Ireland businesses with an annual energy and resource spend of more than £30k can get a free assessment of their environmental performance across areas such as raw materials, energy, carbon, packaging, biodiversity and waste - find out more about Invest NI Sustainability Reports.