Tuesday 30th of August 2016 | Posted In: ESOS

Our guide to the Energy Savings Opportunity Scheme

What is ESOS?

The Energy Saving Opportunity Scheme (ESOS) was introduced by the Government in response to a European Union directive on energy reporting. The aim of the scheme is to reduce the UK’s carbon emissions by making it compulsory for large businesses to identify energy-saving measures. Thousands of large organisations will need to assess their energy use and set out an energy saving strategy every 4 years. The notifications have to be made in December 2019.

Will ESOS affect me?

ESOS is a compulsory scheme aimed mainly at larger private sector organisations. You will need to comply with ESOS if your business has either:

  • Over 250 employees
  • An annual turnover of over €50 million and a balance sheet of over €43 million

When do I need to start?

You’ll need to notify the Environment Agency (EA)  of your compliance in December 2019. However, if you need to gather the necessary information and carry out the required audits we would recommend that you start now so that you successfully meet their requirements.

What happens if I don’t report to the EA?

You may be thinking that this all sounds like rather hard work. However, if you don’t report your compliance you will be fined:

  • A fixed penalty of £5,000.


  • An additional £500 for each day starting after the date of compliance until the notification is completed, for a maximum of 80 days – that’s £40,000.

ESOS has the potential to increase your business profitability by identifying cost-effective savings which if implemented could improve your company’s energy efficiency and reduce energy costs.

How do I comply?

In order to comply with ESOS, you will need to do 3 simple things.

  1. Measure your total energy consumption - this must be the total amount of energy you use across your buildings, transport and industrial activities.
  2. Conduct energy audits to identify cost-effective energy efficiency recommendations - you will need to make sure that your ESOS assessment is conducted or reviewed by a qualified Lead Assessor unless it is covered by a certified ISO 50001 Energy Management System and ensure that any audits cover at least 90% of energy use. 
  3. Report compliance to the Environment Agency - by 05 December 2019, you must notify the Environment Agency that you have complied with the scheme.

The period of the assessment is supposed to cover a continuous 12-month block of time, to include the date 31st December 2018. For example, it could be Feb 2018 to January 2019 or December 2018 to November 2019.

Why are the audits important?

The audits will reveal what you need to do to make energy savings in the future. The scheme doesn’t require you to take action on any saving opportunities identified by the audits; you just need to formally recognise that they exist. The idea is that if you have information about how to start any obvious and compelling energy efficiency investments you are more likely to do so.

The necessary evidence to show that you have gone through this process has to be passed to the Environment Agency.

Who carries out the audits?

One important requirement is that your audits and reporting need to be done under the supervision of a qualified ‘Lead Assessor’. Lead Assessors have to be registered and meet stringent requirements to undertake this work. This is where we can help you; here at FEC Energy we have two Lead Assessors who have gone through the necessary training and qualification process in order to help you with your ESOS audits. Give us a call on 024 7669 6512 to find out more.