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Schools, libraries and public leisure centres should prepare now for the introduction of display energy certificates later this year, warns law firm DWF.

As from 1 October 2008 all public buildings over 1,000 sq m will have to display a certificate giving details of annual energy consumption, assessed on a rating from A to G where A is the most energy efficient and G the least.

The display energy certificate (DEC) is accompanied by an advisory report which recommends ways to improve the building’s energy performance, although this does not have to be on display. Failure to display a certificate is punishable by a fine of £500 and failure to have an advisory report by a fine of £1,000.

The rules apply to all public sector bodies or those providing public services, including schools, libraries, public galleries, museums and leisure centres, prisons, courts and NHS properties.

Claire Chapman partner with the real estate team at DWF says: “Organisations which are affected should start to collect their energy consumption data now. This will involve actual meter readings or consignment notes for all fuels used. The DEC must be prepared by an accredited energy assessor and there is a concern that there may be insufficient assessors to cope with the workload.

“The government hopes many organisations will train employees to do the job. Full details of the qualifications and training required are still awaited, however this may well be the most efficient way to comply with the new regulations.”

ENDS

Notes to editors:

DWF LLP is one of the fastest growing regional law firms in the UK. With over 850 people based in Leeds, Liverpool, Manchester and Preston, DWF provides a range of services grouped under the following practice areas:

Corporate
Banking & Finance
Business Recovery
Litigation
Real Estate
People
Insurance
Private Client

DWF has developed extensive sector-specific expertise in a number of areas including: automotive, education, retail & leisure, legal expenses and food and resourcing. Further information on DWF is available via www.dwf.co.uk.

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Sam Dabbs
Dabbs PR & Marketing
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