Energy Services Act

Energy Services Act — energy audits now mandatory!
Are you affected?

With the aim of achieving a 20% increase in energy efficiency by 2020, the European Union has decreed a number of measures as part of the Energy Efficiency Directive 2012/27/EU. These measures include the conduction of energy audits. This affects all non-small and medium enterprises (non-SMEs).

Hand holding card with energy efficiency chart.

In Germany, the European Union requirements are implemented in the form of the Energy Services Act (Energiedienstleistungsgesetz EDL-G).

The Energy Services Act stipulates:

  • By 12/05/2015, affected companies must pass an energy audit or install a certified energy/environmental management system
  • Conduction of an energy audit every four years if no monitoring system is installed

The standard DIN EN 16247-1 specifies what is to be observed during an energy audit.
The standard requires companies conducting an audit to perform a qualified analysis of energy consumption as well as to analyze the potential for efficiency optimization. In respect to optimizing a company’s energy efficiency, building energy management and the subject of energy-efficient building and refurbishment are key issues.

Businesses that have already implemented certified energy management compliant with DIN EN ISO 50001 or an EMAS-based environmental management system are exempted from the auditing requirement.

In Germany, companies are subjected to random inspection by the Federal Office for Economic Affairs and Export Control (BAFA), which also conducts the audits. The BAFA supplies a list of persons authorized to conduct energy audits in accordance with the EDL-G.

When is a company a non-SME?

Classification of a business as a non-SME is based on the size of its workforce and on financial threshold values. It also needs to be checked whether the business is independent, associated or affiliated, or a company in which public authorities hold a share.

For non-independent businesses that are associated or affiliated with other companies, or which themselves hold shares, determination of the SME status always requires examination on a case-by-case basis.

Businesses are themselves obliged to check whether they classify as non-SMEs in order to find out whether they need to conduct energy audits.

A business is considered a non-SME when

  • it employs 250 or more employees or
  • it employs less than 250 employees but posts more than 50 million euros annual turnover and more than 43 million euros annual balance sheet total.
  • 25% or more of its equity or votes are individually or jointly held directly or indirectly by one or more public authorities or public corporations.

A business will gain or lose the SME status when it exceeds or drops below these threshold values for two consecutive business years. If a business’s status does not remain the same for two years in succession, its year of founding is used as the basis for determining classification as SME or non-SME. This also applies to newly founded companies.

Consequences of violating the EDL-G

The BAFA will randomly inspect roughly 20% of the affected companies to check whether the required measures have been implemented or initiated by 12/05/2015. Should it be found that the energy audit:

  • has not been conducted at all,
  • has not been conducted in accordance with the EDL-G,
  • has not been conducted completely,
  • has not been conducted on time

or that the business has declared itself an SME against evidence to the contrary, it faces a fine of up to 50,000 euros.

Source: Merkblatt für Energie-Audits nach den gesetzlichen Bestimmungen der §§ 8 ff. EDL-G (energy audit bulletin based on the legal provisions of §§ 8 et seqq. EDL-G), published by the Federal Office for Economic Affairs and Export Control (BAFA), version: 07/08/2015

STULZ turns the requirement into an opportunity

The mandatory implementation of the EDL-G needn’t be viewed as a drawback—instead, see it as an opportunity to save energy and thus cut operating costs.

STULZ offers to audit your business in accordance with DIN 16247-1, thus meeting the requirements of the Energy Services Act (EDL-G).


STULZ can also install an in-house developed energy management system in accordance with DIN EN ISO 50001 and monitor your energy consumption. The system fulfills the requirements of the DIN EN 50001 standard such as data analysis, visualization, reporting, alarms, integration with existing systems, and support—which is why the BAFA lists the STULZ system among the energy management systems eligible for subsidizing.

Benefits of the STULZ energy management system

  • Four-year energy audits no longer required
  • Identification of savings potentials thanks to constant monitoring
  • Because energy flows, electricity, gas, heat, and even cold are recorded, energy waste or sources of excessive consumption can be localized and eliminated.

For further details get in touch under +49 (0)6126 945350.


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Holsteiner Chaussee 283
22457 Hamburg 

Central Office: +49 40-5585-0
Fax: +49 40-5585-352

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