The Logistics Carbon Reduction Scheme (LCRS), managed by the Freight Transport Association (FTA), has been highlighted by the Government as a scheme that can help freight companies to complete energy audits.
In accordance with the EU Energy Efficiency Directive, large companies will be required to conduct energy audits every four years, with the first needing to take place by December 5, 2015. The audits will cover transport, buildings and industrial operations.
Fuel has long represented on average 40% of a logistics company's operating costs meaning there is already a huge incentive to reduce energy usage whether a business is in scope of the new Energy Savings Opportunity Scheme (ESOS) or not. Many fleet operators are already implementing energy efficient actions across their business.
In last year's Department for Energy and Climate Change (DECC) consultation on proposals for the ESOS, FTA put forward the LCRS which is successfully demonstrating that industry can reduce carbon emissions voluntarily.
Rachael Dillon, FTA's climate change policy manager said: "The LCRS collects simple fuel and business activity data and could clearly assist freight operators with ESOS. We are pleased that DECC's best practice guidance recognises the LCRS as a mechanism to help manage the freight transport data required for ESOS."
FTA was also concerned about the financial and administrative burden expected to be caused as a result of UK Government implementing EU Energy Efficiency Directive requirements.
More than 7,000 companies affected by ESOS will be required to appoint a lead external energy assessor or in-house expert to oversee the audits. This assessor will need to be listed on a professional register approved by the Environment Agency, the scheme administrator.
Dillon added: "It is only right that companies improve energy efficiency but we remain concerned that the ESOS could end up being a costly and burdensome exercise for businesses.
"Many companies affected by ESOS are also participating in the Carbon Reduction Commitment and even under scope of Mandatory Greenhouse Gas reporting obligations.
"Although data can be shared across reporting requirements, we remain concerned that a myriad of policies could lead to increased complication and cost."