In October 2012 the EU produced the Energy Efficiency Directive (EED), specifying all member countries to create an energy audit scheme to ensure the achievement of the Union’s 2020 target on energy efficiency and to pave the way for further energy efficiency improvements.

For further clarification on this scheme please visit the DECC (Department of Energy and Climate Change)  

The scheme will mandate all non-SME organizations to undertake an energy audit by 5 December 2015.[2]

What is an energy audit?

An energy audit is a survey of energy use across an organization, looking at all aspects of energy use, from the scheduling of machinery to the efficiency of lighting.   An energy audit can be a stand-alone activity or part of an energy management system and is aimed at identifying where energy – and money – can be saved.

Across Europe, each member state is required to develop a scheme to meet the requirements laid out in the EU Directive.  In the UK the Government have created the Energy Savings Opportunity Scheme (ESOS).

UK Requirements - ESOS

The UK Energy Savings Opportunity Scheme (ESOS) is being established by the Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) in response to the EU Directive and it mandates organizations falling into the scheme to undertake an energy audit by 5 December 2015 and every four years thereafter.

ESOS is designed to lead to greater energy efficiency, cost savings and carbon reduction in the business sector.

Who does ESOS apply to?

ESOS applies to large organizations that employ 250 or more staff, or have an annual turnover in excess of £42m and an annual balance sheet total of around £36.5m, or you are part of a corporate group containing a large enterprise.

The government has predicted that 7,300 UK organisations will be affected by ESOS.

How can I comply to ESOS?

Organizations are required to review the total energy use and energy efficiency of the organization and identify cost-effective energy savings opportunities by undertaking an energy audit.

Routes to compliance:

ISO 50001 (Energy Management System) certification is a direct route to ESOS compliance. If you have ISO 50001 certification you will be considered to have met the obligations of the ESOS scheme.

ISO 14001 (Environmental Management System) certification is not a direct route to compliance, however evaluating energy use as an environmental impact provides a good starting point for organizations. It is also a great base to work from to gain ISO 50001 (energy management) certification.

If you are part of the Green Deal scheme you will be considered to have met the requirements of the ESOS scheme.

You can use BS EN 16247-1 (Energy audits) to ensure that your energy audit is of a good standard that gives results that you can implement at the your own pace.

When do I need to comply by?

ESOS regulations are due to come into force on 26 June 2014. Organizations falling into the scheme must complete their first energy audit by 5 December 2015. Audits must be done at a minimum of every four years from the date of the previous audit.

ISO 50001 certification is a route to compliance – how do I gain certification and what other benefits will I see?

ISO 50001 is the world’s leading international standard outlining best practice energy management to achieve energy efficiency. It provides a structure to measure, monitor and audit energy usage.

Learn more about ISO 50001

We provide third party certification to prove that your business is managing energy use effectively; that you’re reducing your greenhouse gas emissions; and you’re working to meet environmental targets.

Steps to ISO 50001 certification

ISO 50001 will pave the way to improved performance, lower energy bills and reduced carbon emissions – all at the same time.

Features and benefits of ISO 50001 (PDF)

Our ISO 50001 certified clients have benefited from implementing and certifying to ISO 50001.

Read client case studies (PDF)

Our training courses will teach you how to implement and conduct internal audits for ISO 50001.

View ISO 50001 training pages


[2] Directive 2012/27/EU of The European Parliament and of The Council of 25 October 2012 on energy efficiency, amending Directives 2009/125/EC and 2010/30/EU and repealing Directives 2004/8/EC and 2006/32/EC.