Sabien urges UK companies to embrace CRC for all round benefits

Industry comment

Published: 24 August

Author: Alan O’Brien

Type: Industry comment

Year: 2010

‘Head in the sand’ and apathy blinding many UK firms to benefits of new carbon reduction scheme – but Sabien urges UK companies to embrace CRC for all round benefits 


  • Many firms could face fines when new laws hit on 30 September
  • Those businesses which prioritise energy and carbon management will be well placed to benefit from the scheme, says Sabien
  • Pioneering, legally binding climate change mitigation and energy saving scheme will be more cost efficient for businesses and improve environmental credentials. Win-win all round


London – Many UK businesses who do not register their energy use with the Carbon Reduction Commitment (CRC) initiative by 30 September will face being fined.


Many have complained about the burden and timing of punitive fines as the economy emerges from recession and difficult trading conditions continue.


“While the CRC implementation has come in for some uninformed criticism, specifically around timing and communication, our view is that many organisations that already have the structures and processes in place to effectively manage their energy consumption and carbon emissions will be well placed to benefit from the CRC,” said Sabien Technology’s Alan O’Brien.


“We suspect that apathy is playing a major part here for those companies who haven’t registered, in our view the CRC is to be welcomed as a world first and UK businesses can be leaner – more cost efficient as well as improving their environmental credentials.


“What has become clear is that many businesses who haven’t registered are burying their heads in the sand as they realise they do not have the infrastructure or support to meet the legislation.


“The CRC is hardly new news - the CRC has been widely debated in the industry for sometime, so in our view lack of preparation is not going to wash. Companies have had plenty of time prepare.” said O’Brien.


“Organisations which have failed to base-lined their energy consumption or effectively recorded and managed their data will find it stressful and challenging to have the information in place and submitted to the Environment Agency by 30 September,” said O’Brien.


“But it is important to be balanced here: over the last 8 to 12 months many energy managers in the private and public sector have been busy implementing Automated Meter Readers across their estates to remove the reliance on estimated bills and any error in the data submitted.


“Some are investing to achieve the Carbon Trust Standard or equivalent to achieve the ‘early action’ metrics and increase their position in the published league tables.


“There will almost certainly ensue a last minute panic to have the information packs completed and submitted, but on the plus side The Environment Agency has stated it will work with those organisations struggling with the submission,” he said.


While the end of September is the deadline for organisations to submit their energy consumption and carbon emission data – O’Brien said the real challenge will hit in April 2011 as organisations need to demonstrate year on year reductions and buy their allowances.


“The CRC participants will also need to review their investment criteria for energy efficiency technology. The typical 2 year payback criteria may be extended once the additional cost risks of the CRC and future energy price increases are factored in,” he added.