Action plan example

Module four

Here’s an example action plan to give you some inspiration for how you might design yours.

Use your action plan to set out your overall aims and objectives and step-by-step details of how you’ll reach net zero and by when. Use it to formulate milestones which you can report on to celebrate your progress.

Remember your action plan is a working document. You can update it as you refine and improve your carbon footprint measurement.

Carbon footprint baseline year 2019
Carbon footprint 600 tonnes
Vision statement
At [Business Name], we know that doing business sustainably is vital for everyone’s future. It’s crucial that we act now and that’s why we’re working towards achieving net zero carbon emissions by 2040.

We’ve made a commitment to halve our greenhouse gas emissions before 2030, achieve net zero emissions before 2040 and we’ll disclose our progress yearly.

To reach this goal, we’ll be taking the following actions.

Action 1
We’ll improve the quality of our carbon footprint data by implementing a more thorough measurement tool for calculating employee commuting. We’ll gain a better understanding and a more accurate measurement of our Scope 3 emissions for procured products and services.
Timings Measurable improvements to be made by end of 2022
Cost No direct cost except ongoing administration and project management costs
Owner Our climate action working group
Approximate emissions reduction No direct emissions reductions as a result (in fact an increase could show in the short term with better measurement), but better data will mean a more thorough and accurate process for reaching our net zero target


Action 2
We’ll switch to green energy for both* of our office sites taking these steps:

  • Research costs and logistical impacts of switching to green energy
  • Speak with other tenants to gauge interest and support
  • Engage with landlord and ask to move to green energy supply

*Any new office/sites to be included

Timings By end of 2022
Cost TBC – potentially an increase in monthly bills
Owner Office Manager
Approximate emissions reduction 120 tonnes


Action 3
We’ll reduce emissions from company owned vehicles for customer visits by 50% through these actions:

  • We’ll use a company taxi account that uses zero emission vehicles. We’ll explore Green Tomato Cars and GLH
  • We’ll invest in two, shared use electric cars
Timings By end of 2025
Cost TBC – cost savings expected
Owner Sales Director
Approximate emissions reduction 45 tonnes


Action 4
We’ll start offsetting our carbon emissions. Our goal is to become net zero by 2040, but on our journey to achieving this we’ll offset our emissions alongside making reductions year-on-year. 
Timings On an annual basis, starting in 2022
Cost Approximately £15 per tonne
Owner Finance Director
Approximate emissions reduction We won’t view this is a reduction in carbon emissions until we’ve made all possible reductions and are in a position to purchase removal offsets for unavoidable

Add further actions as needed! 

Carbon footprint in baseline year of 2019 600 tonnes
Estimated carbon footprint by 2030*
Estimated unavoidable carbon footprint by 2040**

*You need to at least halve your carbon footprint by 2030

**This will be your net zero carbon footprint with removal offsets purchased for unavoidable emissions

This was last updated in September 2021 by Heart of the City. We’ve created these resources for individual SMEs to use. None of our content is to be adapted, reused or repurposed for commercial use.

Climate for SMEs: 4 Steps to Action is funded by the City of London Corporation in support of its Climate Action Strategy targets for a net zero and resilient Square Mile.