BSI Releases Public Consultation on Changes to PAS 51215 Assessment
The British Standards Institution (BSI) has released two public consultations on changes to the PAS 51215 assessment process and the competency of lead assessors. These two consultations include:
- PAS 51215-1 Energy and Net Zero Assessment Process Specification
- PAS 51215-2 Competency of Lead Assessors and Assessment Teams
BSI is inviting the public to comment on the drafts for PAS 51215-1 and PAS 51215-2, a revision sponsored by the Department for Business, Energy, and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) of the existing PAS 51215:2014.
These two documents were developed to ease the uptake of energy and net zero assessments for organisations as well as to establish competencies for assessors.
The UK government established the Energy Savings Opportunity Scheme (ESOS) in 2014, which requires organisations in the UK to undergo a mandatory energy assessment if they meet certain eligibility criteria. This PAS 51215 process and competency is a major driver for ESOS which requires large organisations to conduct energy assessments every 4 years to identify opportunities for saving energy. The Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) supported the creation of BSI PAS 51215:2014 to define the competencies required of lead assessors conducting ESOS assessments. This standard ensures the quality of the energy assessments and sets standards for energy assessors to possess the necessary skills and knowledge to conduct and approve the assessments.
What does PAS 51215 aim to provide?
- Facilitates the adoption of energy efficiency assessments by large organisations.
- Encourages small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) to perform energy efficiency assessments.
- Provides a uniform method for identifying or training lead energy assessors with the appropriate competencies.
What is PAS 51215?
When ESOS was first developed, the DECC sponsored the development of BSI PAS 51215:2014 in order to establish competencies for lead assessors conducting an ESOS assessment. BEIS has subsequently sponsored BSI’s revision of the existing PAS 51215:2014 into two documents:
PAS 15215-1, Energy and net zero assessment – Process – Specification.
This PAS describes the processes for conducting an energy and net zero assessment. BEIS’ aim for PAS 51215-1 is to establish a process for conducting an assessment that is clear and easy to follow. A harmonized approach to energy and net zero assessments can increase the visibility, transparency and comparability of the assessment and the quantified improvement opportunities. Thus, this reduces uncertainties in organisational expectations and ensures that the improvement opportunities are relevant and fit for their intended purpose and/or application.
PAS 51215-2, Energy and net zero assessment – Competencies of lead assessors and assessment teams – Specification.
This separate PAS updates PAS 51215:2014 by strengthening the existing energy competencies and incorporating GHG and net zero competencies. This PAS describes the competencies required for a person to function as a lead assessor and a group of people to function as the assessment team. BEIS’ aim for PAS 51215-2 is to establish clear competencies for lead assessors and the assessment team. When conducted by a suitably competent assessment team, led by a lead assessor, confidence in the output from an assessment increase, and the risk to investment by organisations decreases.
The UK has legislated for net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050, in line with the Paris Agreement of 2015. Following Government research, 98% of organisations are aware of this goal however a third do not understand its implications for them. There is currently no standard for organisations to assess their options and costs for achieving net zero. Some industries and sectors are hard to decarbonise, as the technology is either not commercially viable or not near-commercialised. However, large-scale implementation of ESOS, on either a mandatory or voluntary basis, might help an organisation to identify a large range of options to reduce energy consumption, lower its GHG emissions, and achieve net zero.
Reaction From Elmhurst:
Josh Wakeling, Head of Operations, commented: “PAS 51215 is an excellent standard that helps organisations to take proactive steps towards becoming more energy efficient. The standard ensures that energy assessments are conducted by trained and competent assessors, which helps to ensure the quality of the assessments. By providing a consistent way for lead energy assessors to be identified or trained, PAS 51215-1 helps to ensure that energy efficiency assessments are conducted in a consistent and reliable manner. PAS 51215 is an essential tool for organisations looking to reduce their energy usage and carbon emissions as we head towards Net Zero.”
Elmhurst will analyse the draft document and provide our response in due course. We encourage everyone to provide their own response where possible.
Closing Date: Midnight on 20th March 2023.
Only comments submitted via the BSI public review website will be accepted, and no comments submitted after the above date will be accepted.
You can find the links to the public consultations here:
PAS 51215-1 Public Consultation – https://standardsdevelopment.bsigroup.com/projects/2022-01777#/section
PAS 51215-2 Public Consultation – https://standardsdevelopment.bsigroup.com/projects/2022-01778#/section