Energy assessors in demand as October deadline for DECs and EPCs approaches

Low-carbon energy assessors are reporting high volumes of workload for energy certificates as demand increases ahead of the deadline of 1 October. It is estimated that 40 000 buildings will require a Display Energy Certificate by October and that a further 10 000 Energy Performance Certificates will subsequently be required every month from October. Since the legislation came into force earlier this year, CIBSE Certification has accredited over two thirds of all energy assessors as CIBSE low-carbon energy assessors. Judy Ong is a low-carbon energy assessor (LCEA) with Ecotag and says, ‘The rush to get DECs in time for October is definitely in full swing. There is never an enquiry for just one DEC; there is always at least a dozen and sometimes a few hundred required. We would encourage anyone who thinks they will require DECs not to delay in finding an assessor in order to get assessments completed in good time.’ From 1 October, all public buildings over 1000 m2 will require a DEC, and all buildings will require an EPC on construction, sale or let. One assessment carried out by Judy Ong gave a grade A on the DEC for a Nottingham School, compared with a typical rating of D to E. The assessment was for the pool and theatre block of West Bridgford School. Judy Ong explains, ‘In 2005, the school converted their old coal-fired boilers to run on 100% renewable biomass as part of Nottinghamshire County Council’s Woodheat initiative. Since conversion from coal to biomass, over 2000 t of carbon emissions have been saved. I am very pleased that this is recognised in the building’s energy certificate, and it shows the importance of renewable sources for improving energy ratings.’ LCEA Richard Hipkiss of i-Prophets Energy Services, says, ‘With 1 October nearing, the volumes of certificates LCEAs are working on is increasing by the week. For DECs in particular, occupiers are starting to realise that now is the time to start, and companies like ours with consultancy and project-management experience are geared up to meet the volumes.’
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