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Display Energy Certificates

Example of DEC

Since October 2008 there has been an obligation on public authorities and institutions to display a valid Display Energy Certificate (DEC) in buildings which are frequently visited by members of the public that have a total useful floor area of > 1000m².


Threshold for DECs - now reduced to all buildings over 250m² (as of 9th July 2015) 

The Energy Performance of Buildings (England and Wales) Regulations 2012 came into force on 9th January 2013 and subsequently, the floor area of buildings requiring a Display Energy Certificate reduced to > 500m² and was further reduced to > 250m² as of 9th July 2015.

This means that a Display Energy Certificate and Advisory Report are now required for all the (publically accessible) buildings on site that are over 250m² to ensure the legislation is complied with.  


Requirements under the scheme will be dependent on the size of your building:

Size of Building

Display Energy Certificate

Advisory Report


Required - Valid for 12 months.

Required - Valid for 7 years.

>500m² - 1,000m²

Required - Valid for 10 years.

Required - Valid for 10 years.

>250m² - 500m²

Required - Valid for 10 years.

Required - Valid for 10 years.


DECs are valid for 1 year for buildings over 1,000m² (and so will need to be renewed on an annual basis) and are valid for 10 years for buildings over 250m². Advisory Reports are valid for 7 years for 1,000m² buildings and 10 years for  buildings over 250m². When a building has its first DEC completed, an Advisory Report also needs to be produced.


Display Energy Certificates

Display Energy Certificates (DEC) show the energy performance of a building based on actual energy consumption data. DECs include an A-G energy rating for the building, where A has the lowest CO2 emissions (best) and G, the highest CO2 emissions (worst). The certificate is similar to those that are required for fridges and many other white goods. The rating is also shown as a number. A typical building of its type would have a rating of 100 and a building with twice the typical CO2 emissions would have a rating of 200 (or G). The DEC rating shows whether the occupier is using energy efficiently and the trend over the last three years.


Advisory Reports

The Advisory Report contains recommendations for improving the energy performance of the building and enables the occupier to identify what may be done to reduce energy consumption and carbon dioxide emissions.

The Advisory Report groups the list of recommendations by payback period as follows:

  • Short-term payback (up to three years), for example building energy management measures
  • Medium-term payback (three to seven years), for example upgrading building services
  • Long-term payback (more than seven years), for example Low and Zero Carbon (LZC) technologies.


Both the Display Energy Certificate and Advisory Reports can be used to help you monitor energy performance and identify ways of reducing energy consumption and therefore carbon emissions.


Possible Penalties

Failure to display a valid Display Energy Certificate (DEC) at all times in a prominent place clearly visible to the public can result in a penalty of £500. In addition, a penalty of £1,000 is payable for failing to have possession of a valid Advisory Report (AR).


Further Advice

You can search for a Non-Domestic Energy Assessor to produce the Display Energy Certificate and Advisory Report on the Non-Domestic Energy Performance Register: www.ndepcregister.com. You can also retrieve previous DECs and ARs.


Should you need any further support or guidance, please get in contact with the Council's Energy Team via energy.team@bedford.gov.uk