Streamlined Energy and Carbon Reporting Regulations
Through the Climate Change Act, the government has committed to reducing emissions by at least 80% against 1990 levels by 2050. This is in line with the Paris Agreement, which aims to cut global emissions reductions in order to limit global warming to below 2°C.
With carbon emissions stemming from all human activities, there is a need to understand energy performance and carbon reduction across many different sectors. This has led to a plethora of corporate carbon calculation, reporting and tax requirements.
The new Streamlined Energy and Carbon Reporting (SECR) regulations aims to simplify this process. As the new regulations come into effect on the 1st April 2019 businesses need to act now to get procedures in place to enable compliance with the new requirements.
 Existing Reporting Requirements and Regulations
 Mandatory Greenhouse Gas Reporting (MGHG)
Since 2013 all quoted organisations are required to monitor and report their Scope 1, 2 and 3 carbon emissions. Carbon reporting has been used as the first step to help organisations understand their carbon footprint before developing carbon emission reduction measures.
 Energy Savings Opportunity Scheme (ESOS)
ESOS is a mandatory energy assessment scheme for all large, UK organisations, as defined by the Companies Act 2006. These must undertake energy audits for their buildings, industrial processes and transport every 4 years and develop energy efficient strategies. ESOS was introduced in 2014 and Phase 2 is underway for compliance by December 2019.
 Climate Change Levy (CCL)
The Climate Change Levy, introduced in 2001, is an environmental tax charged on energy used by businesses with the aim of driving reductions in GHG emissions. Most industrial, public service, commercial and agricultural businesses fall within its criteria, with only some exceptions, e.g. low energy usage organisations and charities. The future sees CCL being increasingly important, with the government already having legislated to increase CCL rates in 2019.
The CRC Energy Efficiency Scheme is a mandatory carbon emissions reporting and pricing scheme, applicable to large public and private UK based organisations (e.g. hotels, water companies, banks, schools, central government departments). Organisations must monitor and report carbon emissions from gas and electricity and buy allowances to cover their annual emissions. With CRC deemed a complex and costly scheme, government has announced that the scheme will be closing in 2019.
The EU ETS, introduced in 2005, applies to businesses from energy-intensive sectors, e.g. manufacturing industries such as steel, cement, aluminium, paper and organic chemicals, aviation and power generation. It lets businesses buy and sell greenhouse gas emission allowances. However, the trade emission allowances are reduced over time therefore effectively forcing businesses to invest in greenhouse gas reduction initiatives.
While it would be great to think that all the existing legislation can be streamlined into a single reporting requirement, this is far from the case.
With the introduction of the SECR only the CRC scheme will cease to operate (in 2019), so in theory overlap between schemes will remain. Critically, the SECR eligibility criteria now aligns more closely with the ESOS criteria, meaning that an estimated 8,000 additional companies will be required to report on carbon emissions.
 What does SECR require?
SECR will require all UK, large, quoted and unquoted companies, as defined by the Companies Act 2006, to monitor and publish energy use and carbon emissions in their annual reports. The only exemptions are for those using less than 40,000 kWh of energy in the reporting year.
- Scope 1 and 2 GHG emissions
- UK energy usage (electricity, gas and transport)
- An emissions intensity metric
- A narrative commentary on energy efficiency action taken
- Scope 3 voluntarily
- Global energy use when practical
 Why introduce SECR?
The government hopes that SECR will not only simplify carbon reporting but will also improve energy efficiency in business. It is anticipated that broadening the scope of reporting compliance will support growth, improve energy security and decarbonise our economy.
Nevertheless, SECR presents a challenge to many businesses that do not currently calculate and report their carbon footprint. However, with more concrete details yet to be announced and the timeframe until April 2019 being limited, it is crucial for corporations to start setting up business processes to respond to the SECR requirements, and plan for the opportunities and challenges posed by SECR.
 Related articles on Designing Buildings Wiki
Issue support documents
|These are Multiple Author Articles - click on them and add to them today. It's easy.|
You can also add to General Multiple Author Articles here.
Issue support documents are written for named BREEAM Issues or sub-issues. More info. (ac) = awaiting content.
|Thanks to our Knowledge Sharing Ambassadors for a lot of this content|
- BREEAM Sustainability champion
- BREEAM Environmental management
- BREEAM Considerate construction
- BREEAM Monitoring of construction site impacts
- BREEAM Aftercare support
- BREEAM Seasonal commissioning
- BREEAM Testing and inspecting building fabric
- BREEAM Life cycle cost and service life planning
- BREEAM Stakeholder consultation (ac)
- BREEAM Commissioning (ac)
- BREEAM Handover (ac)
- BREEAM Inclusive and accessible design (ac)
- BREEAM Post occupancy evaluation
 Health and Wellbeing
- BREEAM Visual comfort Daylighting (partly ac)
- BREEAM Visual comfort View out
- BREEAM Visual comfort Glare control
- BREEAM Indoor air quality plan
- BREEAM Indoor air quality Ventilation
- BREEAM Thermal comfort
- BREEAM Internal and external lighting (ac)
- BREEAM Indoor pollutants VOCs (ac)
- BREEAM Potential for natural ventilation (ac)
- BREEAM Safe containment in laboratories (ac)
- BREEAM Acoustic performance
- BREEAM Safety and security (ac)
- BREEAM Reduction of energy use and carbon emissions
- BREEAM Energy monitoring
- BREEAM External lighting
- BREEAM Low carbon design
- BREEAM Passive design
- BREEAM Free cooling
- BREEAM LZC technologies
- BREEAM Energy efficient cold storage (partly ac)
- BREEAM Energy efficient transportation systems
- BREEAM Energy efficient laboratory systems
- BREEAM Energy efficient equipment (partly ac)
- BREEAM Drying space
- BREEAM Transport assessment and travel plan
- BREEAM Public transport accessibility
- BREEAM Sustainable transport measures
- BREEAM Proximity to amenities
- BREEAM Cyclist facilities
- BREEAM Alternative modes of transport (ac)
- BREEAM Maximum car parking capacity
- BREEAM Travel plan
- BREEAM Home office (ac)
- BREEAM Water consumption
- BREEAM Water efficient equipment
- BREEAM Water monitoring
- BREEAM Water leak detection (ac)
- BREEAM Hard landscaping and boundary protection
- BREEAM Responsible sourcing of materials
- BREEAM Insulation
- BREEAM Designing for durability and resilience
- BREEAM Life cycle impacts
- BREEAM Material efficiency (ac)
- BREEAM Construction waste management
- BREEAM Recycled aggregates
- BREEAM Speculative floor & ceiling finishes
- BREEAM Adaptation to climate change
- BREEAM Operational waste
- BREEAM Functional adaptability (ac)
 Land Use and Ecology
- BREEAM Site Selection
- BREEAM Ecological value of site
- BREEAM Protection of ecological features
- BREEAM Minimising impact on existing site ecology
- BREEAM Enhancing site ecology
- BREEAM Long term impact on biodiversity (ac)
- BREEAM Impact of refrigerants
- BREEAM NOx emissions
- BREEAM Flood risk management (ac)
- BREEAM Surface water run-off (ac)
- BREEAM Reduction of night time light pollution (partly ac)
- BREEAM Reduction of noise pollution
Once an ISD has been initially created the '(ac)' marker can be removed
This particular index is based around the structure of the New Construction and RFO schemes.