How to get a headstart to ESOS compliance
Businesses can now start gathering 12 months of energy consumption data to give them a headstart in complying with phase two of the Energy Saving Opportunity Scheme (ESOS).
Under ESOS, all eligible organisations must record and collect 100% of their business-wide energy data, including buildings, processes and transport activities, for a continuous 12 month period that includes 31 December 2018. They must also use this information to identify areas of significant energy consumption to be assessed for energy saving opportunities.
Michael Dent, Managing Director of Inprova Energy, said: “With 31 December now less than 12 months away, the complex ESOS data collection process can officially begin. Although the final compliance deadline for submission of ESOS assessments is 5 December 2019, businesses should start as soon as possible because it takes time to collate this complex information from the original sources, such as meter readings, delivery notes, mileage logs or supplier invoices.
“By acting promptly, businesses will have a chance to rectify any inevitable data gaps or inaccuracies and to verify everything. This will avoid any delays in the final ESOS assessment and ensure timely submission to the regulator.
“Perhaps the biggest benefit of early compliance is that the sooner businesses complete their ESOS assessment, the sooner they will capitalise on cost savings opportunities from improved energy efficiency. In phase one our ESOS lead assessors were able to identify energy saving opportunities that could cut client energy bills by as much as a fifth.”
ESOS applies to large, mainly private sector businesses (with more than 250 employees, or a turnover of more than 50 million Euros and a total balance sheet asset value of more than 43 million Euros). Any business that qualified for ESOS Phase One is likely to qualify again, but they must use fresh data.
There are large financial and reputational risks for those who fail to comply with ESOS, which is rigorously enforced by the scheme regulators. In its latest report, the Environment Agency has confirmed that it has investigated 2,400 organisations in England and issued hundreds of enforcement notices.
Organisations can achieve compliance with ESOS by gaining accreditation under the international ISO 50001 Energy Management Standard if it covers an organisation’s entire energy consumption data, across all activities. Other routes include implementing ESOS compliant business-wide energy surveys; commissioning Display Energy Certificates (DECs) with accompanying advisory reports for the energy efficiency assessment of buildings; or Green Deal Assessments.
ESOS Lead Assessors may also consider audit work as part of other schemes, such as activity under the Carbon Trust Standard and Logistics and Green Fleet Reviews, where these meet the requirements of ESOS.