Local business calls for Government support for switch to green energy

Hunslet-based LVF Packaging has called on the Government to incentivise manufacturers and other high energy users to switch to renewable forms of energy.

The thermoformed packaging specialist, which already produces most of the electricity it requires to operate on a 24/7 basis through a solar power installation and a low carbon gas generator, feels the lack of help is stopping a lot of businesses making the switch.

Daniel Coates, LVF Packaging’s business development director, said:

“If the Government really is serious about meeting its Carbon Zero targets then it needs to do something drastic and do it quickly.

“The benefits of switching to renewable energy are far reaching – especially if you consider the potential number of businesses that would make the switch if properly incentivised.

“There’s the positive environmental impact and the push it would give Government achieving its Carbon Zero target. And then you need to take into account the fact it would keep manufacturing costs down, which in turn would help reduce inflation and ease the cost-of-living crisis, while also making British made products more appealing for export.”

At present there are three main ways in which a business can switch to solar power.

  • Capital expenditure – that involves the business paying upfront for the equipment and installation and then reaping all the benefits of the power generated
  • Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) – businesses cover the up-front costs of equipment and installation and then charge a per unit price for all electricity produced over a set time period; usually 25-years
  • Leasing – a straight rental agreement that sees equipment leased for a set period of time and the renter not paying for any of the power generated. This is very infrequently used.

“Interestingly, the energy crisis in 2022 and the seemingly uncontrollable surge in prices that led to didn’t translate into a rush of businesses switching to renewable energy – a situation that poses just one question, why?

“The answer seems obvious. Cap-ex was either too much or out of reach and businesses were put off by current PPA and leasing options.

“So, what needs to be done? The Government needs to develop an incentive to those making the switch – whether that’s grants to help with cap-ex or some sort of agreement with PPA and leasing suppliers that helps make unit prices, contract terms or leasing costs more appealing.

“The aim though is the same for all the options – to get high-energy users switching en-masse to renewable energy and with it taking the country one giant step closer to being Carbon Zero.”

LVF Packaging is a family owned and operated business with a nationwide reputation for the design and manufacture of high-quality, thermoformed packaging. In August 2023 it announced that it was now producing all the electricity needed to operate on a 24/7 basis through renewable energy. For more information visit www.lvfpackaging.com


This post is based on a press release issued by LVF Packaging

Photo: The solar installation at LVF Packaging’s headquarters


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