The Fit 4 Sustainability programme, which is open to Luxembourg companies of all sizes and sectors, was created to help companies assess and reduce their environmental footprint, adopt a more sustainable approach to business, and ensure their long-term competitiveness. Since the programme’s inception in September 2022, 16 companies have now applied to have an external consultant assess their operations’ environmental impact.

Emmanuel Kipper is in charge of the Fit 4 Sustainability programme“We’ve been very active at the company level, and we’ve also engaged with several of our stakeholders, including the Chamber of Skilled Trades, the Chamber of Commerce and FEDIL, to ensure that companies interested in conducting environmental assessments of their activities are aware that they have an aligned support through the Fit 4 Sustainability programme. The application from these 16 companies demonstrates the growing awareness and interest in Fit 4 Sustainability,” says Ms Kipper.

Key deliverables under the Fit 4 Sustainability programme  include an environmental study carried out by an external consultant that measures the impact of a company’s operations on the environment, as well an action plan with concrete recommendations to assist the company reduce its environmental impact.

“Most business activities have an environmental impact, and before you can even think about reducing it, you must first measure it. Reducing environmental impact implies assisting companies in using fewer resources, such as less energy, water, and other raw materials,” adds Ms Kipper.

Energy efficiency: Top interest for companies

Based on the enquiries received and applications so far, energy efficiency assessments constitute the most common requests from companies, an understandable fact considering the energy crisis. “Companies can deal with the increased cost of energy while maintaining their competitiveness by becoming more sustainable,” says Ms Kipper. While the Fit 4 sustainability programme naturally appeals to medium-sized and large companies, small companies have also demonstrated interest in the programme.

“The fact that Fit 4 Sustainability is open to all companies is logical because sustainability and a company’s competitiveness and revenues are inextricably linked,” states Ms Kipper. On the one hand, costs decrease when companies use fewer resources, increasing the company’s competitiveness. On the other hand, and with customers becoming more informed and vigilant about their purchases, companies can increase their market share by retaining and attracting new customers, in addition to cutting costs by adopting a more sustainable approach.

Apart from energy consumption and decarbonisation strategies, the environmental study can cover a range of sustainability themes, such as improved water management and circularity practices for better raw material usage and waste reduction.

Fit 4 Sustainability: co-funding and application support available

Eligible companies under the Fit 4 Sustainability programme can receive up to 70% of co-funding from the Ministry of the Economy, depending on the size of the company and other project requirements.

“Companies are obliged to pay part of the costs for the study, so it’s important they foresee this cost in their budget. The consultant will conduct a study but also make recommendations, and it is always a plus if the company has established an internal working group to implement these recommendations. Companies can select what they want from the recommendations and how quickly they want to implement these actions,” explains Ms Kipper.

Luxinnovation supports companies with their sustainability ambitions by not only connecting them with the consultant(s) in charge of conducting the study from a pool of specialised and accredited consultants, but also by conducting a joint pre-analysis of the company’s needs and guiding them throughout the application process.

Photo credit: Luxinnovation/Marion Dessard, Shutterstock

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