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Association for the Conservation of Energy hits out at inconsistent standards

Submitted by: MikeC (Admin) on 24-Jul-09 01:14:25 PM

Andrew Warren, director of the Association for the Conservation of Energy (ACE), has criticised the accreditation and training regime for churning out energy assessors who provide inconsistent energy ratings, whilst “experienced assessors”, trained by "established" companies, are “frozen” out of the market.

‘Professional integrity’ of assessors under pressure

In an article published today, Only reform of the EPC will bring about improvements, in which he calls for the EPC to be “upgraded” to promote both ratings and a property’s “full technical potential” for energy saving measures to be displayed “upfront” in promotional literature, he writes:

Assessors can feel under pressure to balance professional integrity against losing business to less responsible assessors […] we need to have confidence that the rating given will be approximately the same whoever provides it.

He cites the story of an energy assessor who gave a building a low rating. The assessor didn’t get paid and lost out on future work after the owner’s solicitor came back and said another assessor had “given the building flying colours.”

Mr Warren also claims to have seen “empirical evidence” which shows that those who received training from “reputable, established organisations, tend to produce consistent measurements for certification.”

“Others, less so,” he adds.

‘Software merchants’

But his most scathing attack is directed towards the UK Government’s decision to appoint nine accreditation bodies, instead of a single state-appointed body as practiced in many other EU member states:

Some were very familiar names, like National Energy Services or Elmhurst; others didn’t even have a website and still appear to be little more than software merchants.

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