UK Backs Off Some Carbon Reporting Requirements

The UK government will simplify its carbon reporting scheme in an effort to reduce administrative costs for businesses.

Rather than reporting emissions on 29 fuel sources, the Carbon Reduction Commitment’s (CRC’s) Energy Efficiency Scheme will require reporting on only two energy sources: electricity and gas for heating.

The reforms to the scheme were announced in the Chancellor’s Autumn Statement, delivered last week, and will deliver a 55 percent reduction in costs, saving around $437 million for participants, according to the Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC).

The carbon reporting rules affect about 5,000 businesses and public organizations, using more than 6,000 MWh of electricity a year, according to Bloomberg Businessweek. Critics say the reporting program costs participating businesses about $48,200.

The simplified reporting will be effective from 2013, and the CRC reporting scheme will be evaluated in 2016. This review will consider whether the CRC remains the appropriate policy to meet industrial energy efficiency and carbon reduction objectives, and will consider alternative approaches that could achieve the same objectives. The tax element of the CRC introduced at Spending Review 2010 will be a high priority for removal when public finances allow.

Other reforms to the CRC Energy Efficiency Scheme include:

  • Abolishing the Performance League Table but continuing to publish participants’ aggregated energy use and emission data.
  • Withdrawing all state-funded schools in England from the scheme.

In July, the UK Environment Agency levied penalties on four companies that failed to submit corporate emissions data required by the CRC.

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