Government responds to its Energy Saving Opportunities Scheme consultation

The Government has today published the response to its consultation on the Energy Saving Opportunities Scheme (ESOS).

The scheme, which will require all large (non-SME) organisations in the UK to undertake audits of their energy by 5 December 2015 (and every 4 years after), is the Government’s response to Article 8 of the EU Energy Efficiency Directive (EED). The Directive requires all EU Member States to introduce a programme of regular energy audits for ‘large enterprises’.

Richard Griffiths, Policy and Campaigns Consultant at the UK Green Building Council, said: “It’s great to finally have the Government’s response to the ESOS consultation. DECC officials have obviously done a great deal to account for industry concerns in their proposals for the scheme, especially in trying to ensure that it goes with the grain of existing policies. While we feel it could have been stronger in places – particularly in the light of its lack of a requirement for participants to enact any of the opportunities they uncover – it could still potentially provide welcome impetus to energy efficiency activity in the commercial sector.

However, for that to become a reality it is critical that Government puts substantial effort into boosting awareness of the scheme amongst participants, including providing comprehensive practical resources on how to follow up ESOS audits with action. We look forward to working with the DECC, the Environment Agency and, of course, industry to help make sure that ESOS meets its huge potential.

Government launched its ESOS consultation in July 2013 to seek the views of business, industry and trade bodies and other interested parties. The consultation closed in October 2013.

UK-GBC is holding an event on energy efficiency in commercial buildings which will include a focus on ESOS on 16 July. Click here or contact for more details.