Energy efficiency act
The energy efficiency act requires large companies and energy suppliers to undertake energy audits. Such obligation is based on the size of each company or corporate group. A large company is defined by having at least 250 employees or a turnover of at least EUR 50 Mio as well as at least EUR 43 Mio of total assets.
Large companies are obliged to undertake energy audits every four years under the energy efficiency act. Companies can conduct either an external energy audit or implement an intra-nationally recognised management system (i.e. energy or environmental management system). Audits have to cover the areas of buildings, transport, and processes, if an area exceeds 10% of total energy consumption. Energy audits shall be conducted by an approved auditor. External auditors have to be listed in a public register.
Regardless of whether a large company decides to carry out an external audit or implement a suitable management system, in principle it can switch to the other option during the commitment period.
Small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) can consult an energy advice service and report the contents and findings to the national energy efficiency monitoring agency.
Results of the first obligation period were published in October 2016, with 59% of the large companies choosing the external energy audit and 41% implementing an energy or environmental management system. Out of the 41% which have chosen a management system, 47% of the companies conducted the international environmental management system according to ISO 14001, and 41% of the companies opted for the energy management system according to ISO 50001.
In 2020, a total of 2,059 large companies reported to the monitoring agency. 1,207 of them have opted for an external audit, whereas 682 companies made use of an internal energy or environmental management system.
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