Use ESOS to streamline Energy & Carbon Reporting

The Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy (BEIS) are consulting on "Streamlined Energy and Carbon Reporting" in an effort to raise awareness, reduce bills and save carbon for large businesses in the UK.

In her Ministerial foreword Claire Perry, Minister of State says that "Energy efficiency is vital to business productivity, security of energy supplies, and supports the transition to a low-carbon economy."

Government recognise that currently there are just too many different policies, which has resulted in complexities and additional burden on UK businesses. They therefore want to make things simpler.

The Minister states: "Reporting still has a valuable role to play – what gets measured gets managed – and the UK government announced it would consult on a simplified energy and carbon reporting framework for introduction by 2019."

Without wanting to re-invent the wheel, the Minister confirms: "The UK government is not creating new standards we are simply requiring businesses to measure energy and carbon using existing standards." Furthermore; "Saving energy is a very cost effective way to reduce costs, save carbon, and help to meet our emission reduction targets."

Elmhurst Energy is the UK's largest government approved accreditation scheme for energy assessors and also holds an Approved registers of Energy Savings Opportunity Scheme (ESOS) lead assessors. We have created a draft response to the consultation, in which we have stated that what is required is one simple to understand system which builds upon ESOS.

The Government in the consultation recognise this with the removal of some complex out-of-date schemes, as well as taking the best bits from a number of other current policies, it will make ESOS what it should and can be.

Elmhurst Summary of Recommendations:

The concept of ESOS is sound but its light touch was open to abuse. Elmhurst proposes that;

  • The scope of ESOS should be made BREXIT friendly and mirror existing UK definition of mid sized and large companies, such as that used by Companies House. Public and government bodies should be included.
  • The report format should be standardised and aligned with the seven principle of environmental reporting i.e. to be Relevant/ Quantitative / Accurate / Completeness / Consistent / Comparable / Transparent.
  • Audits should be undertaken annually.
  • The report submission should be standardised and include identification of industry sector (SIC code), a summary of the opportunities identified and the agreed intensity metric.
  • A company’s performance within the sector should be presented with a rating that identifies the best performing companies.
  • The annual report should provide a commentary of progress towards previously identified energy saving opportunities.
  • ESOS assessors should ideally be independent (i.e. not directly employed by the company under assessment) but if not the relationship should be declared.
  • The quality assurance process around the production of ESOS reports needs to be reviewed to ensure consistency and to indentify best practice from which others can learn.

Martyn Reed – Managing Director of Elmhurst Energy comments

"As part of the Clean Growth Strategy we are delighted to see this consultation. The current myriad of different schemes and policies for large business in the UK is not helpful; they are complex, bureaucratic and often measure in completely different ways. We see that ESOS needs to be refined, taking the best bits from the current polices. It needs simple, clear processes, consistent measuring requirements and standardised reports. With simplicity will come clarity and more importantly action on reducing energy and carbon emissions for UK businesses. We encourage all our members to respond to this important consultation."

Elmhurst will respond to the consultation tomorrow to ensure a simpler, more effective method is used moving forward to drive energy efficiency in large public and private businesses. We encourage all our members to respond with their own thoughts; but if you wish to give us your ideas, we will endeavour to cover these points in our overall response.

The deadline for responses is 11.45pm 4th January 2018

You can read Elmhurst's draft response here.

Full Consultation details are here: 

Article Published: 3rd January 2018

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