Energy audit: Why ?
In France, the law provides a framework for energy audits through the EN-16247 standard. This diagnosis is mandatory for all companies with more than 250 employees. It is the subject of a report sent to the Ministry of the Environment, Energy and the Sea.
For the companies concerned, performing an energy audit is above all an opportunity to make more energy savings on a daily basis, and to achieve a higher level of energy efficiency by setting a target for reducing energy consumption, and thus improve their energy performance.
Performing an energy audit to assess the building’s energy performance
The energy audit first allows us to assess the energy performance of the building. In the scope of a standard energy audit, we may identify differences between the standard energy performance, i.e. the stated energy performance of the building, which may be different from its actual performance. The goal of this detailed study is to analyze the way energy expenses are allocated in order to raise the auditor’s awareness.
What are the steps involved in performing an energy audit? The energy audit begins with a site visit, in order to collect as much data as possible about the thermal functioning of the building: its consumption of data and energy use. We are therefore focused on the structure and operation of the building: dpe, ventilation etc…
We then proceed to make various readings by using our sensors in order to improve the energy efficiency of the building under study: temperature, VMC extraction rate etc… Our sensors take images of the building.
Finally, using a dedicated software, we modelize the building on a dedicated software and use a detailed inventory of the building to evaluate its energy consumption. With this, we can provide you with a set of recommendations that will bring real improvements to your specific situation, and set a framework of services to be implemented to provide you with appropriate solutions. Based on this complete analysis of building consumption, we are able to present you with a quantified report and determine what your charges and energy costs will be, as well as the potential savings to be made.
So in which cases should you consider performing an energy audit? First of all, it can come from a voluntary approach to improving one’s energy performance, for a private individual for example. Spending less energy to reduce costs, obtain a tax credit, get a bonus, improve comfort, increase your energy production, make the building healthier or validate a certification are only some of the many reasons to plan an energy audit.
Furthermore, for large companies in the service sector and industry, energy audits are now mandatory, and must be renewed every 4 years.
The energy audit as a solution to identify points for energy improvement
By closely analyzing building consumption, the energy audit helps answer the question: “what steps can be taken to improve the energy efficiency of a building, while increasing comfort?”. This question is part of a dynamic of global reflection around goals related to the energy transition or energy performance.
The current climate and energy challenges require us to reduce our energy consumption as much as possible, to improve the energy efficiency of construction programs, particularly in the commercial building sector.
The audit highlights points for improvement to be taken advantage of when setting up an action plan. Indeed, it gives you an idea of the cost to be anticipated and which equipment will be the most cost-effective for optimizing the energy efficiency of buildings. At Oze Energies, the calculation of the energy signature of your construction projects is automated.
Plan an energy audit to define the energy optimization approach
The energy audit process precedes the implementation of any action plans to improve the energy efficiency of a building. This action plan is based on figures, such as the investment rate, the energy savings achieved and time of return. It is necessary to have a more deep and detailed understanding of all the points necessary to take into account for optimal energy performance.
So what type of actions can be taken to improve the energy performance of these programs? These may include insulation upgrades, changing or maintaining your heating boiler or solar panels.
Oze-Energies allows you to significantly improve your energy performance without the need to carry out any construction or renovation work. We are also capable of taking into account weather forecasts in our energy diagnostics to allow for optimal power usage in your specific environment. We install systems operating with sensors in your buildings. Some capture VOCs (volatile Organic Compounds), other focus on removing harmful fine particles, allowing us to analyze and improve your indoor air quality.
Finally, we guarantee you a continuous follow-up on the installations performed, in order to anticipate regulatory and technical evolutions. We help you achieve an average 25% energy savings, without necessarily planning renovation work on existing buildings.
Which companies are concerned by the mandatory energy audit?
The mandatory energy audit concerns large companies. The legal obligation applies to firms with more than 250 employees, or whose activities bring in more than 50 million euros in revenue. Companies whose consolidated balance sheet exceeds 43 million euros required to comply with the new regulations.
French law and European legislation therefore regulate the consumption of the companies that consume the most energy. According to studies, approximately 5,000 French companies would be concerned.
Energy audits to save money
Performing regular energy audits is estimated to save about 50% of the energy consumed by a company, depending on its sector of activity. An energy audit is an excellent way to identify areas where you can become more efficient, achieving energy savings and lowering expenses.
In order to be sustainable, an energy audit must be the first step for the implementation of an energy strategy for the company.
It can be beneficial to initiate the construction of an energy management system, with the aim of obtaining the ISO 5001 certification. Companies covered by this system are exempt from energy audits, as the ISO standard of measurement is more highly valued than statutory energy audits.
The implementation of an energy management system goes further than the energy audit performed by the company. It is adapted more precisely to the specific requirements of the company and its developmental context.
Energy management systems also cover a much larger scope than an energy audit in terms of energy efficiency improvements, which also grants you access to the company energy savings certificate (CEE).
How to conduct a business energy audit?
Although it is possible to perform an energy audit for any company wishing to improve their energy efficiency, the law provides a very precise framework for the statutory energy audits large companies are subject to perform.
Article L233-1 of the energy code specifies,in the form of a report, all of the information relating to the requirements for the conducting of an energy audit in companies affected by this regulation. To do so, they have a platform for receiving energy audits on the ADEME website.
The platform also makes an energy audit analysis grid available to decision-makers. It describes the framework for the business energy audit, which includes the information that must appear in the audit report.
The business energy audit includes a data collection phase, involving a visit to the buildings concerned, a data analysis phase, the identification of possible improvements, and, finally, a report presenting the findings.
This analysis chart is particularly useful if you choose to conduct your energy audit internally. However, since these energy audits are regulated by law, for them to be of full value they must be conducted externally.
Once your audit report is submitted, you will be able to predict the costs of various investments and your energy improvement strategy for your buildings will become fully actionable.