In an effort to raise awareness of systematic breaches of the system, which has seen only an estimated 5-10% of systems complying, the National Association of Air Conditioning Energy Assessors (NAACEA) is encouraging both members and non members to identify non compliant sites.
The move follows recent correspondence between accreditation company Sterling Accreditation and the Department for Communities and Local Government in which the DCLG insisted that it was the duty of all local weights and measures authorities to ensure that all air conditioning systems covered by the Energy Performance of Buildings Regulations carry inspection reports and to impose penalties if necessary.
In the emailed letter dated March 12, Anna Dougal, head of compliance policy for EPBD at DCLG stated “If there is evidence that any local weights and measures authority is electing not to enforce the Energy Performance of Buildings (England and Wales) Regulations 2012, then they may be in breach of their statutory duty and at risk of judicial review.”
“We are very supportive of Sterling Accreditation’s recent initiative including freedom of information requests being issued to local Trading Standards Offices requesting details of actions taken to enforce the regulations,” commented Neil Dady, chairman of NAACEA.
“Now through NAACEA setting up a facility for our members to report non compliant sites we intend to identify systematic breaches and if necessary highlight the failings of Trading Standards Office to take action,” he added.
“Companies that have chosen to ignore the regulations will be identified and reported to their local TSO’s. We feel strongly that individual assessors, that have invested in training and qualifications, need to be supported and any initiatives that increase compliance with the regulations will have our 100% support.”
All air conditioning systems put in place on or after 1 January 2008 should have been inspected within five years of installation, with older systems over 250kW output inspected by January 2009, and other systems above 12kW inspected by January 2011.
It has been widely reported that the level of compliance with air conditioning inspections is still only between 5% and 10% of qualifying properties some 3 years after the deadline dates.
NAACEA are therefore encouraging both members and non members to identify non compliant sites and have added a reporting facility to their website www.naacea.org.