News story

The bottom line for business: save energy, save money.

By reducing energy consumption by 1 per cent, big businesses could save over £250 million on their energy bills annually.

This was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government


Big businesses are paying for five power stations worth of electricity each year they don’t need. However even reducing their energy consumption by 1 per cent could save over £250 million on their energy bills annually.

The new Energy Saving Opportunity Scheme (ESOS), launching in December, will help large organisations cut their electricity use with a detailed energy audit.

Over a hundred representatives from businesses, charities and universities met with Energy and Climate Change Secretary Ed Davey today to explore how to use energy more efficiently and lower their energy bills.

Addressing the event, Ed Davey said:

Britain’s big firms are spending around £2.8 billion extra each year on inefficient energy technologies – the equivalent output of nearly five power stations.

Now is the time to seize the opportunity with ESOS – and organisations up and down the country are already gearing up to make changes to save energy, save money and save the environment.

If you act and invest, you will save – and that’s the bottom line.

Through ESOS all large organisations that employ at least 250 people, or have an annual turnover of above around £40 million and a balance sheet above around £34 million, must carry out energy audits every 4 years.

Hugh Jones, Managing Director, Advisory at the Carbon Trust commented:

At the Carbon Trust we have already engaged with hundreds of businesses on ESOS, helping to explain how they can achieve compliance while also making significant energy savings and cutting carbon.

From the interest we have seen so far we expect ESOS to benefit British business by helping companies to reduce overheads and increase competitiveness.

Businesses often aren’t aware of opportunities in energy efficiency, or they don’t realise how attractive the paybacks can be. By requiring companies to understand exactly how they can make cost-effective investment in energy efficiency, they are far more likely to take action.

The event was held at the Institute of Directors and included a panel discussion with Ed Davey, Rhian Kelly (Director of Business Environment at CBI), and Paul Ekins (Director UCL Institute for Sustainable Resources & Deputy Director of the UK Energy Research Centre). Attendees explored how to encourage take up of energy efficiency opportunities to make the most of the scheme.

The event marked the end of a successful series of events across the UK between the Government, devolved administrations, business leaders and energy managers.

Notes to Editors

  1. The Energy Savings Opportunity Scheme (ESOS) is a mandatory energy assessment scheme for all large organisations - including businesses, charities and universities - in the UK. We estimate this includes around 9,400 organisations.

  2. Qualifying organisations must carry out energy audits every 4 years, with the first assessment due by 5 December 2015. The audits will provide them with high-quality information about how they can improve their energy efficiency and ultimately save money on their energy bills.

  3. Government established ESOS to implement Article 8 (4-6) of the EU Energy Efficiency Directive. In line with the Directive, the scheme does not apply to the public sector.

  4. Find out more details about ESOS

The Department of Energy and Climate Change will review the ESOS policy in 2016.

Published 26 November 2014