So, what is ESOS Phase 3 and what does it mean for your business?
The Energy Savings Opportunity Scheme (ESOS) is a compliance scheme that started in 2015, with no foreseeable end date. It is the UK’s implementation of the EU Energy Efficiency Directive and has been confirmed to stay in place post-Brexit.
The aim of ESOS is to assess your energy consumption, identifying reasonable opportunities to reduce your energy use and improve resource efficiency across your operations. For most, this is in electricity and gas use, but could also include other fuels such as petrol, diesel, oil, etc.
You will need to comply with ESOS regulation if your company has more than 250 employees, or a turnover of more than £44,845,000, AND a balance sheet of more than £38,566,700.
If one company within a group structure meets the criteria, then the entire group must comply. If you are not sure whether your company needs to meet ESOS requirements, get in touch and we are happy to help investigate this for you. Furthermore, if you don’t fall under these categories, whilst not mandatory, then it can be worth completing an audit to achieve several benefits, which we’ll now discuss in more detail.
The benefits of complying with ESOS early
During Phase 2 of ESOS, Energise identified more than £13m worth of savings opportunities. Whilst financial savings are not guaranteed, a vast majority of our customers do find areas to improve on energy savings. A rough example is that an organisation with a £1m energy bill where average identified savings are 17% (our Phase 2 average) means that delaying by 6 months could lead to a loss of savings of about £85,000. Energy can be full of quick wins to reduce consumption and therefore carbon emissions, which is why we also provide an enhanced audit to meet Net Zero requirements and encourage the use of ESOS as being a driving force rather than simply a tick-box exercise.
Prepare for Net Zero
There has never been a more important time to begin your Net Zero journey, and for many companies, complying with ESOS is a great way to start. Once done, we can support you to look at the wider areas of your emissions and build those into a Net Zero strategy. We provide detailed reports for each site/fleet audit we complete with an in-depth assessment of the data available including well-costed opportunities to reduce energy and carbon, an assessment of renewable opportunities available, and a summary of what offsetting would be required to make the site’s operations Net Zero (for Scope 1 & 2 emissions). For more information on what’s involved in an ESOS audit, see: What is an ESOS audit and what rules do you have to follow?
In addition to being better for planet and pocket, our enhanced audits bring the potential for unlocking bespoke opportunities. With an ever-increasing demand from investors and consumers for proof of sustainability, the Net Zero transition provides the opportunity to demonstrate credentials and action. Sustainable action can also attract and keep talent, with 66% of UK employees wanting to work for a company that is trying to have a positive impact on the world and 45% of employees saying they would consider resigning if the company values did not align with their own1.
Complying with ESOS Phase 3 is compulsory
For the ESOS Phase 3 deadline, it’s been made clear that there won’t be any room for delays in submissions – failure to comply may result in a fine up to £5,000, plus £500 for each working day the organisation remains in violation. Furthermore, you can be at risk of penalties if you fail to comply with specific regulations, for example failure to undertake an energy audit, maintain records, or submit a misleading statement.
Secure your audit early
This year, there are less lead assessors than previous phases so higher demand is expected. We recommend booking an audit early to ensure you can work with your desired consultancy and allow time to receive any support you need. In 2019, as part of ESOS Phase 2, we audited 1.2% of the UK’s total energy use and completed over 400 audits. With six ESOS Lead Assessors in-house, experienced in conducting ESOS across all sectors, we’re well-positioned to support you and excited to join you on the journey.
Ready to get started? Visit our FAQ page or get in touch at email@example.com and our expert team will be happy to answer your questions and discuss the next steps.
- Net Positive Employee Barometer