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Last edited 12 Jun 2020
Energy certificates for buildings
The EU Directive on the energy performance of buildings was adopted in 2002. It was intended to improve the energy efficiency of buildings, reduce carbon emissions and reduce the impact of climate change.
The requirements were originally introduced in England and Wales by the Energy Performance of Buildings (Certificates and Inspections) (England and Wales) Regulations 2007. Implementation in England and Wales was completed on 1 October 2008. Energy performance is a devolved matter in Scotland and Northern Ireland.
A recast of the Energy Performance of Buildings Directive was adopted in 2010 and on 9 January 2013, the Energy Performance of Buildings (England and Wales) Regulations 2012 took effect. This consolidated and revoked all previous regulations.
The regulations require that:
- Energy performance certificates (EPCs) are produced for certain dwellings and non dwellings.
- Display energy certificates (DECs) are produced for large public buildings.
- Air conditioning inspections are carried out for systems above a certain size.
Energy performance certificates (EPCs), set out the energy efficiency rating of buildings. They are required when buildings are built, sold or rented if they have a roof and walls and use energy to condition an indoor climate. If a building contains separate units (for example a block of flats), each unit needs an EPC, but they are not required for shared bedsit type accommodation.
Display energy certificates (DECs) show the energy performance of large, public building based on their actual energy consumption. They are intended to raise public awareness of the energy use of buildings.
The regulations require that air conditioning systems with an effective rated output of more than 12kw are inspected every 5 years. An inspection report is then produced providing information about the efficiency of the system and advice about how to improve it. There is no requirement to act on the recommendations.
 Related articles on Designing Buildings Wiki
- Accredited energy assessor.
- Air conditioning inspection.
- Air tightness.
- Building performance metrics.
- CRC Energy Efficiency Scheme.
- Display energy certificate.
- Emission rates.
- Energy Act.
- Energy performance certificate.
- Energy Performance of Buildings Directive.
- Energy related products regulations.
- Energy targets.
- Green building.
- Green mortgage.
- Green rating systems.
- Listed buildings.
- Minimum energy efficiency standard (MEES).
- Moving towards green residential buildings.
- National Calculation Method.
- Non-domestic private rented property minimum standard.
- Performance gap.
- Simplified Building Energy Model.
- Sustainable home.
 External references
- Legislation: Energy Performance of Buildings (England and Wales).
- Department for Communities and Local Government: A guide to energy performance certificates for the construction, sale and let of non-dwellings.
- Department for Communities and Local Government: A guide to energy performance certificates for the construction, sale and let of dwellings.
- Department for Communities and Local Government: A guide to display energy certificates and advisory reports for public buildings.
- Department for Communities and Local Government: A guide to air conditioning inspections for buildings.
- Department for Communities and Local Government: Local weights and measures authority guidance for energy performance certificates and air conditioning inspections for buildings.
- Department for Communities and Local Government: Recast of the Energy Performance of Buildings Directive - impact assessment.
- Guild of residential landlords: Changes to EPC Regulations 2013.
- RICS: Effectiveness of EPC for the Existing Housing Stock. September 2012.
- Jones Lang LaSalle: A Tale of Two buildings. Are EPCs a true indicator of energy efficiency? 2012.
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