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How to ISO your ESOS

The compliance period for Phase 2 of the Energy Savings Opportunity Scheme (ESOS) is underway and qualifying organisations are now able to begin the compliance process.


Organisations caught under the ESOS regulations can now start conducting audits to identify cost-effective energy efficiency opportunities for Phase 2, or move forward with implementing ISO 50001. To achieve ISO 50001 certification can take well over a year, so early action here will be required if you want use this route to comply with ESOS. 

ISO 50001 Energy Management System

ISO 50001 can be applied to all organisations using energy. It specifies the requirements for establishing, implementing, maintaining and improving an energy management system.  The ultimate aim is to achieve continual improvement of energy performance, including energy use, energy efficiency and consumption.

The benefits of ISO 50001 certification include:

  • Reduce energy costs, emissions & consumption
  • Help to meet any energy legislation requirements (e.g. ESOS)
  • Increased productivity and competitiveness
  • Streamline management procedures & processes (can tie in with existing ISO management systems such as ISO 14001)
  • Reputation – can have an impact on clients and suppliers, improved environmental credibility, increased prestige
  • Improved local air quality
  • Identify and manage any risks regarding future energy supply

Nearly 12,000 organizations worldwide had achieved certification at the end of 2015 (first phase of ESOS) – up 77% from the previous year. UK companies represented 12% of these, achieving savings of up to 20% on energy use. 

At WSP we have great experience working with clients in developing and implementing Energy Management Systems, helping organisations in their drive to ISO50001, from initial scoping through the certification process and ongoing monitoring.

In my experience I find that the best first step is often a Gap Analysis – to identify any gaps in an existing system compared with ISO 50001. Once we know where the gaps are we can:

  • Develop an implementation plan
  • Put processes in place to implement the plan
  • Carry out energy reviews in order to measure energy use, consumption and baselines
  • Identify and prioritise opportunities for improving energy performance
  • Help you through the certification process
  • Provide ongoing monitoring to measure progress and performance over time

We have found that taking this phased approach can make the process easier – rather than starting afresh it is often easier to build on existing systems. Building on existing systems means the process is less time consuming, and so cheaper – saving money. 

ISO 50001 can be a great step forward in managing energy use, and allows energy management to take advantage of a strong management culture and process. This can lead to good energy savings – helping to cut costs and emissions. 

Nikolaos Koumpetsos, ESOS Lead Assessor & CIBSE Low Carbon Consultant