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Energy Savings Opportunity Scheme (ESOS) Moves into Focus for 10,000 UK Firms

Energy Savings Opportunity Scheme (ESOS) Moves into Focus for 10,000 UK Firms

The Energy Savings Opportunity Scheme, or ESOS as it is more affectionately known, was formally unveiled last summer as the UK government's response to new EU Energy Efficiency Directives calling on companies to, unsurprisingly, improve their energy efficiency.

The government has wasted little time in actioning the directive which will affect around 10,000 private business operating in the UK.

In short, all companies, charities, and universities that employ more than 250 staff, have an annual turnover of £40m or a balance sheet of more than £34m are obligated by the scheme to measure their total energy consumption across areas such as buildings, transport and industrial activities.

Energy audits must be conducted in order to identify cost-effective energy savings.

You can view further information at our dedicated website www.esoshelp,com

The Countdown

If you're part of a sizeable organisation that will be required to comply with ESOS, your next thought is likely to be 'how long have I got?'. The answer is just over eight months with the clock ticking towards the 5th December 2015 deadline. Between now and then, you must appoint a qualified ESOS Assessor to undertake an energy audit and assess total organisational consumption. This information must then be submitted to the Environment Agency ahead of the deadline.

Why is ESOS Happening?

The scheme has come in for some criticism from certain quarters with various industry personnel accusing the coalition government of introducing additional administrative strain on private firms via a scheme that 'overlaps unnecessarily' with the Carbon Reduction Commitment (CRC) for larger companies. There may be some justification in that but the flip-side is potentially huge savings for these 10,000 firms and the economy as a whole.

In fact, it is projected that if all ESOS participants used the audits to reduce their energy bills by just 0.7 per cent, they would save £250m. These post-ESOS audit savings would equate to a £2.8bn saving per year across the board.

Non Compliance

The Environment Agency has been authorised to penalise organisations for non-compliance through civil penalties and can publish your company name, reason for non-compliance and fine imposed. The penalty for failing to undertake an ESOS Assessment is a minimum of £50,000 so the government certainly aren't treating this scheme as a token gesture to the EU.

If your company falls into the obligatory bracket and you want more information on how to comply, you can contact me directly on 0800 063 9257. We are already working with a number of sizeable companies and planning their ESOS assessments to ensure full compliance ahead of the December deadline.

Julie Palmer

About the author

Julie Palmer

Regional Managing Partner

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Julie is a law graduate who qualified with Price Waterhouse in 1994. Julie joined Smith & Williamson in 1997 and became a partner in 2001. With Mike Stevenson, Julie set up Middleton Partners offices in Salisbury and Southampton, both of which are now part of Begbies Traynor.

Julie is a member of the Insolvency Practitioners Association and the None Administrative Receivers Association and is a Fellow of The Association of Business Recovery Professionals. Julie deals with all aspects of Corporate Recovery and turnaround work and takes all form of personal insolvency appointments.

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