A million-pound package is set to help businesses in and around Southampton cut their emissions, a minister has said.

Martin Callanan, Minister for Energy Efficiency and Green Finance, paid a visit to Fawley Refinery on Monday.

It comes as the Solent Cluster - a group of businesses in the area looking at reducing carbon - has been handed more than £750,000 to boost its work.

Lord Callanan said the aim is to get businesses looking at how they can improve their energy efficiency.

The Solent Cluster includes Veolia, the University of Southampton, and Solent Local Enterprise Partnership, among many more.

Daily Echo: Lord Callanan paid a visit to Fawley Refinery on MondayLord Callanan paid a visit to Fawley Refinery on Monday (Image: Newsquest)

Speaking on Monday, Lord Callanan said: “The funding is for the Solent Cluster to produce a local, industrial, decarbonisation plan, working with all the businesses that are in this area to look at how they can improve their energy efficiency, how they can be more profitable, and how they can reduce their emissions over the longer term.

“This money will allow them to produce a plan to do just that.

“There are a whole series of different areas that the businesses in this area can look at.

“They can work together on a plan that brings all of the industries into one cohesive unit that can look at the decarbonisation options.

“I look forward to seeing The Solent Cluster’s plans to cut its carbon footprint, create green jobs and grow the economy.”

READ MORE: Major Fawley expansion with 1,000 jobs costing £800m set to progress

As part of the government's £6 million funding for projects across the UK, The Solent Cluster collaboration is in line for up to £757,601.

Along with matched contributions from The Solent Cluster members, this will result in a total of £1,032,540 will be earmarked for the development of a comprehensive and collaborative plan to decarbonise the Solent region.

Anne-Marie Mountifield, chair of The Solent Cluster, said:  "This announcement is great news for our region and for the decarbonisation ambitions for the whole of the UK. 

“Here in the Solent, the funding will be used to work with industry to ensure access to low-carbon hydrogen production and carbon capture and storage, at the same time as measuring wider economic benefits to the local region.

“Working together as The Solent Cluster, we have the potential to effect real change in energy production and consumption which will, in turn, secure existing livelihoods and create new green jobs, support energy resilience and affordability, and ensure the UK is at the forefront of the emerging low-carbon economy."