Today sees the launch of a new not-for profit social impact grant scheme, Energy for Tomorrow (EfT) This grant scheme has been created by Centrica to support and empower entrepreneurs, particularly those from underrepresented groups, who have concepts and innovations to tackle climate change, lower energy bills, and deliver real impact to people and communities.
Research shows companies with all male founding teams raise 91% of all venture capital investment in the UK and in the last five years, just one percent of venture-backed founders were black. At a time of global climate, environmental and health crisis, it is now more than ever when communities need to be supported with innovative products and services. Through partnering with and investing in new ideas developed by non-mainstream thinkers, it is hoped EfT will empower society to change the way they think about and use energy.
From today, EfT is calling for applications that focus on the scheme’s inaugural theme ‘Innovations that help make people’s lives easier and more sustainable’. The aim is to partner with of six to ten organisations who have innovative ideas to help deliver affordable, accessible and reliable clean energy. Each chosen organisation will receive a grant of between £100,000 to £500,000, provided over a period of up to three years. Priority will be given to smaller organisations with turnover of less than £1 million and to projects focused on the UK.
The scheme’s revenue is derived from the feed-in-tariffs of solar panels installed on over 250 schools across the UK. These solar panels currently save each school almost £2,500 each year, collectively offsetting 1.5 tonnes of CO2.
EfT is welcoming applications from charities, CICs and not-for-profit and for-profit companies and enterprises with a clear social mission. These include organisations that are:
- Innovators – creating new solutions to reduce carbon emissions and changing the way society uses energy
- Helping people – to engage with their individual energy use, understand how their behaviours can impact the environment and demonstrate how things can be done differently
- Supporting communities – especially hard to reach groups, to collaborate and use energy in a more sustainable way, delivering real benefits to their local area
Sarah Wright continues: “The world of energy needs clean, sustainable energy solutions that deliver for all. It’s why I am excited to be launching the Energy for Tomorrow grant scheme, which takes funds derived from school solar panel tariffs, to help a diverse range of entrepreneurs get their energy concepts to market.”
All of the above criteria complement Centrica’s 2030 Responsible Business Ambitions. The Ambitions support the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals and address some of the most challenging issues facing society, including tackling climate change, building a more skilled and inclusive workforce, innovating to make customers’ lives easier and making our communities stronger.
Through partnering with and funding new ideas developed by non-mainstream thinkers, it is hoped that EfT will enable people and communities to change the way they think about and use energy.
Notes to Editors
 Beauhurst 2018
 RateMyInvestor 2019
About Energy for Tomorrow
EFT is a social impact fund set up to help tackle climate change and support communities in reducing carbon emissions. EfT award grants to start-ups who are creating innovative products and services that can accelerate the energy transition. This includes reducing carbon emissions, changing societal and customer use of energy or helping communities improve their energy management and deliver real benefit to the local area. We want to help grow the energy players of tomorrow. We will prioritise support to entrepreneurs from diverse backgrounds, including those who have traditionally not been well supported by the investment community.