It has long been accepted wisdom that improving energy efficiency among the UK’s business sector is one of the ‘low-hanging fruit’ of the ambitious targets to cut carbon emissions.
But, just months away from a deadline to comply with energy efficiency audits that could be accompanied by hefty fines, a large percentage of companies still appear to be under-prepared.
FM companies have been concentrating on energy efficiency and monitoring in recent years, aware than ability to offer a client the chance to monitor and cut energy use as part of its service package could give them an edge in competitive tendering. And for these player, it appears that the coming months could offer the chance to win more work.
The deadline for submitting energy efficiency audits under the government’s Energy Savings Opportunity Scheme is 5th December, but which time large UK businesses much report their annual energy use or face hefty fines. ESOS has been set up to comply with the European Commission’s Energy Efficiency Directive and requires companies with a turnover of more than £39 million or with more than 250 staff to submit energy audits.
But some companies cite a failure to understand the scheme, while others appear to have stuck their heads in the sand.
Surveys carried out suggest that many companies have not started working on their assessments – 61 per cent of companies surveyed by Energy Live News had not yet appointed an assessor, and only a quarter were compliant with ESOS’s requirements. Earlier thsi year it was reported that 49 per cent of businesses in the manufacturing industry were unaware of the scheme while 40 per cent of contractors in construction had nothing in place to monitor their energy use or emissions.
Companies that qualify for ESOS should not underestimate the time required to comply.