Small Business Toolkit

This page last reviewed June 23, 2011


  Small Business

Providing cost-effective strategies to assist small businesses in reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and saving money will be an integral part of the California Air Resources Board's (ARB) implementation of the California Global Warming Solutions Act of 2006 (AB 32).  Therefore, the ARB is currently developing a draft Toolkit to facilitate voluntary GHG emission reductions among small California businesses.  The impetus for developing the Toolkit is considerable interest expressed by stakeholders.  The development of guidance and protocols for businesses to facilitate GHG emission reductions were also approved as early action items by the Board at its June 2007 hearing.  The Toolkit will be web-based to reach a broad audience.

The Small Business Toolkit includes information on:

Cost-saving Action Areas to Reduce GHG Emissions
Action areas will include detailed information and links to appropriate websites to facilitate implementation of actions to reduce GHG emissions including, but not limited to, energy efficiency and conservation; renewable energy; green transportation; green building; waste reduction and recycling; water conservation, recycling and reuse; environmentally preferable purchasing; and promoting individual action.

California Case Studies
The case studies will highlight California small businesses that have successfully and profitably reduced their GHG emissions.

Incentive Programs
California utilities, Flex your Power, the Department of Energy and many other organizations offer a variety of incentives – such as rebates, grants, and loans – to implement climate-friendly action.  These resources are compiled on's Funding Wizard.

A Climate Calculator

The ARB is working with the Berkeley Institute of the Environment (located at the University of California Berkeley) to develop a Business Carbon Calculator tool that allows for rapid assessment of direct, indirect and life cycle emissions from energy, transportation and procurement (construction and inputs to production).

Decision Support Tools
With sponsorship from the California Energy Commission's Public Interest Energy Research program, the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (LBNL) is creating the next generation of non-residential energy benchmarking tools. LBNL’s online, "action-oriented" benchmarking tool, EnergyIQ, provides a standardized opportunity assessment based on benchmarking results, along with decision-support information to help refine action plans.  EnergyIQ will be promoted as one of the appropriate decision-support tool for small businesses.

An Award Program
ARB has an award program to recognize small businesses that achieve quantifiable greenhouse gas reductions on an annual basis and those that make significant efforts to educate employees and/or the general public about strategies to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. The award program is administered through the website. Check out some of the 2009 winners in our video clips on YouTube below:

A Peer-Networking Online Discussion Forum
ARB staff is working with web designers to develop business-friendly peer-networking opportunities on; examples include blogging, videoblogging, and connections to social-networking sites.

Check out the online home of the Toolkits at

For questions or comments, please contact Annalisa Schilla at (916) 322-8514.