Delivering Energy Performance Certificates for buildings
• Those using SBEM or its interfaces will be on the calculations register and accredited at level 3 (to certify buildings with simple services systems) or level 4. All the major providers of simulation (DSM) and calculation (SBEM) software are participating in the CIBSE scheme. Separate software is required to produce a DEC and the accompanying advisory report. Once this software is available from the Department of Communities & Local Government (CLG), CIBSE will provide training for DECs. Who will produce the certificates? The directive requires certificates to be produced by suitably qualified and/or accredited persons acting in an independent manner. In England and Wales ‘suitably qualified’ refers to an individual having either a qualification or demonstrating that they have approved prior experience and learning (APEL) equivalent to all the requirements of the relevant national occupational standards. These set out the skills and the knowledge that are required to produce both EPCs and DECs. They also cover the domestic market, and air-conditioning inspectors. [For more information, go to our web site (www.modbs.co.uk) and type ‘air-conditioning inspectors’ into the search field]. To be accredited, assessors must join an approved scheme. CIBSE Certification Ltd operates one of the first approved accreditation schemes for non domestic buildings for energy assessors. It is our goal to enable those who are currently low-carbon consultants to become accredited energy assessors, after some top-up training in the use of the approved software for producing certificates and in the administrative and practical details of preparing certificates and reports. CIBSE Certification welcomes those who are not yet low-carbon consultants and also provides training and accreditation for suitable individuals who wish to become energy assessors. CIBSE intends to add modules for those LCCs who are working on residential or mixed-use developments to be able to produce domestic energy-assessment certificates using approved SAP software as part of a wider portfolio of services. This scheme is not intended for individuals wishing to be domestic energy assessors only. Further consumer-protection measures are required for energy assessors who visit private dwellings. As the appropriate arrangements are finalised with all relevant parties, we will be keeping low-carbon consultants and CIBSE members informed of progress. The institution will also be producing guidance on the requirements for producing EPCs and DECs, to complement the guidance on air conditioning inspectors already published in July 2007 as ‘TM44: air conditioning inspections’. The CIBSE publications will cover EPCs, DECs and the benchmarks for the various categories of buildings. There will also be a guide to the whole issue of carbon calculations and energy certification for buildings. These various guides will be completed and published as soon as the relevant information is available from CLG and can be incorporated into the current drafts. Watch www.cibse.org for more in- formation on the publications, and www.cibsecertification.co.uk for information on becoming a low-carbon consultant and an energy assessor. Hywel Davies is technical director with the Chartered Institution of Building Services Engineers.