For businesses and energy users

For businesses and energy users

Energy Efficiency Methodologies & Business Support

There is a host of useful information available to help design and implement effective energy efficiency, cogeneration and demand management projects.

The Energy Efficiency Council has drawn together a range of key documents, information, resources and links to help those embarking on a project for the first time.

Wondering what support is available to help you finance your next efficiency project? Trying to learn more about Energy Performance Contracting? Want to understand measurement and verification?

Check the menu links on the left to learn more.

Business Support & Financing Efficiency

There are a range of programs delivered by State, Federal and local governments designed to help businesses in all sectors improve their energy efficiency.

These programs exist to make implementation of efficiency projects more affordable, to help businesses harness the potential of innovative technology, to drive job creation and investment in clean and efficiency technologies and to help businesses contribute to the reduction of greenhouse gases.

Certificate Trading Schemes

Certificate trading schemes, also known as 'mandatory obligation schemes', exist in several states to create financial incentives for businesses to invest in energy efficiency, rewarding companies that undertake projects that either reduce electricity consumption or improve the efficiency of electricity use.

When a business invests in reducing their energy use, energy savings certificates (ESC) are created by the voluntary scheme participants that have helped to implement those energy savings activities. Electricity retailers (and other bodies who buy or distribute electricity), are mandatory scheme participants and are obligated to then buy the energy savings certificates to meet their own legislated targets, as required by law.

Current certificate schemes include:

Click here to see Energy Efficiency Council members who have experience of creating and trading certificates.

Visit to read more about these schemes.

Loan Financing

A range of loans and finance support programs are available to help business invest in large scale energy efficiency programs, both through government programs and the private sector.

These programs enable businesses to minimise, or avoid, the upfront costs of the project, with loan repayments enabled with the savings that the project has generated. The best way to access these programs is by working with an established Energy Services Company (ESCO) who has the knoweldge and experience to maximise savings for your business.

Examples include:

  • Energy Performance Contracting – When you contract with an ESCO, they will recommend cost-effective improvements, work with you to implement the recommendations you choose, and guarantee that the resulting savings will cover all project costs. Read more…
  • Environmental Upgrade Agreements - Under a EUA, owners of commercial and industrial properties can access funds from a finance provider for energy, water and other environmental improvements. The loans are repaid through the local council rates charge, so are considered to be low-risk by the financier. In commercial buildings, the cost of the upgrades may then be partly recouped from tenants, provided they are offset by reductions in energy and water bills.

Click here to see Energy Efficiency Council members who can work with you to help finance your energy efficiency project.

Visit to read more about loan financing.

Energy Performance Contracting

What is Energy Performance Contracting?

Energy Performance Contracting is a smart, affordable and increasingly common way to make building improvements that save energy and money. Any large building or group of buildings is an ideal candidate for performance contracting, including council, state and federal sites, schools, hospitals, commercial office buildings and light industrial facilities.

Do you face these problems at your facility?

  • You have old, obsolete or inefficient energy systems and equipment in your buildings
  • You need to make energy system improvements, but there are too many other demands on your time and budget
  • You have recurring equipment problems that take up valuable staff time

If so, here's the good news...

You can make the energy upgrades you need now - perhaps with no up-front capital - and pay for them later through the energy savings that result. Best of all, those savings can be guaranteed. How? Through energy performance contracting.

How does Energy Performance Contracting work?

Your energy bills may be higher than they need to be due to obsolete or aging equipment or poor control. By contracting with an energy service company (ESCO) you can put those wasted energy dollars to better use.

Your ESCO will recommend cost-effective improvements, work with you to implement the recommendations you choose, and guarantee that the resulting savings will cover all project costs (usually within 3 to 7 years).

A qualified ESCO can help you put the pieces together:

  • Identify and evaluate energy-saving opportunities;
  • Develop engineering designs and specifications;
  • Manage the project from design to installation to monitoring;
  • Arrange for financing if required;
  • Train your staff and provide ongoing maintenance services; and
  • Guarantee that savings will cover all project costs.

Where do I start?

There are five steps to setting up an Energy Performance Contract:

  1. Decide whether to use an Energy Performance Contract
  2. Select an Energy Service Company
  3. Define the scope of the project
  4. Negotiate an Energy Performance Contract
  5. Modify the Standard Energy Performance Contract

For more information see the Best Practice Guide to Energy Performance Contracting

Click here to view EEC members with experience of energy performance contracting.

Measurement & Verification (M&V)

Many factors can influence how much energy a facility uses, such as technology, weather and the number of staff using a site.
As a result, working out how much energy an energy efficiency upgrade is saving requires more than just metering. Energy professionals need to use accurate measurement and repeatable methodology, known as a measurement and verification (M&V) protocol.

What is M&V?

M&V methods and processes are used to measure and verify, in a defined, disciplined and transparent way, the energy savings resulting from planned and defined changes to all or parts of the energy infrastructure of a specific facility or a group of specific facilities. The savings are measured and verified without regard to the energy performance of any facility other than the facility at which a Energy Conservation Measure (ECM) is implemented.

M&V is an active and on-going process. In a generic sense, M&V is what good facility staff should do continuously: measure energy performance, make changes to their energy infrastructure and/or operations and maintenance, and verify that the changes work as planned and continue to work over time. M&V requires additional discipline and transparency in measuring and verifying savings than normally is provided for facility/energy management. For EPC projects, the M&V process is formal and an integral part of the contractual arrangements.

What is M&V not?

Traditional energy monitoring, accounting, analysis, and reporting of consumptions and costs is not measurement and verification (M&V), as understood and defined in the international literature. They are functions that facility and energy managers should do as a normal part of their responsibilities to manage the energy performances of their facilities. M&V has a more focused purpose and requires additional discipline, rigour and transparency.

Why measure and verify?

Effective M&V can help you:

  • Increase energy savings
  • Reduce the cost of financing projects
  • Encourage better project engineering
  • Help demonstrate and capture the value of reduced emissions from energy efficiency and renewable investments
  • Increase public understanding of energy management as a public policy tool
  • Help national and industry organisations promote and achieve resource efficiency and environmental objectives

Where do I start?

If you're going to be undertaking projects, you may wish to consider undertaking formal M&V training. The Energy Efficiency Council works in collaboration with the Efficiency Valuation Organization (EVO®) to deliver the PMVA training and examinations program in Australia.

Performance Measurement and Verification Analyst (PMVA)

Measurement & Verification (M&V) methods and processes are used to measure and verify energy savings a defined, disciplined and transparent way. M&V forms a vital part of any energy efficiency project or upgrade.

The EEC, in collaboration with the Efficiency Valuation Organization provides profiessional training workshops for M&V professionals in order to raise standards in M&V. The right to use the PMVA title is granted to those who demonstrate proficiency in the M&V field by passing a 4-hour written exam and meet the required academic and practical qualifications. 

Click here to learn more.

Best Practice Guide to Measurement and Verification of Energy Savings

The information above has been taken from the Best Practice Guide to Measurement and Verification of Energy Savings, developed by the Commonwealth of Australia and the Australasian Energy Performance Contracting Association (the forerunner of the EEC).

The Guide presents a basic framework and methodologies for measurement and verification, to help energy efficiency service providers and customers understand the key issues for determining how successful a project has been.

Download the Best Practice Guide to Measurement and Verification of Energy Savings

Quick Reference Guide to Energy Auditing

In 2014 Standards Australia released a new series of standards for energy AS/NZS 3598. The new Standards are more rigorous, outcomes-based and are focused on providing clients with actionable energy savings measures. 

The Energy Efficiency Council has worked with the NSW Office of Environment and Heritage to develop a Quick Reference Guide to Energy Auditing, focused on Commercial and Industrial audits.

Download the Quick Reference Guide to Energy Auditing.


Guide to Energy Efficiency Acronyms

The world of energy efficiency is packed full of abbreviations and acronyms.

To make it a little easier to navigate, we have put together this handy reference list. If you have other suggestions you think we should add, drop us a line or tweet us @EECouncil!

  • ABGR - Australian Building Greenhouse Rating
  • ACCU - Australian Carbon Credit Units
  • ACP - Accredited Certificate Provider
  • AEPCA - Australasian Energy Performance Contracting Association (forerunner to the Energy Efficiency Council)
  • AGO - Australian Greenhouse Office
  • CA - Carbon Abatement
  • CC - Combined Cycle
  • CCPP - Combined Cycle Power Plant
  • CEEL - Certified Energy Efficiency Leader
  • CEES - Certified Energy Efficiency Specialist
  • CHP - Combined Heat & Power
  • CCHP - Combined Cooling, Heat & Power
  • CMVP - Certified Measurement and Verification Professional
  • CMVP-IT - Certified Measurement and Verification Professional in Training
  • COP - Coefficient of Performance
  • DFSA - Detailed Facility Study Agreement
  • DM - Demand Management
  • ECM  - Energy Conservation Measure
  • EE  - Energy Efficiency
  • EEC - Energy Efficiency Council
  • EECS - Energy Efficiency Certification Scheme
  • EEO - Energy Efficiency Opportunities program
  • EOI - Expression of Interest
  • ENPI – Energy Performance Indicators
  • EPC - Energy Performance Contract (or Contracting)
  • ESAP – Energy Savings Action Plan
  • ESC - Energy Savings Certificate
  • ESCO - Energy Services Company
  • EUA - Environmental Upgrade Agreement
  • EVO - Efficiency Valuation Organization
  • GHG  - Greenhouse Gas
  • HVAC - Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning
  • IAccP - Innovation Access Program
  • IAQ - Indoor air quality
  • IPMVP - International Performance Measurement & Verification Protocol
  • IRR - Internal Rate of Return
  • M&T - Monitoring and Targeting
  • M&V - Measurement and Verification
  • MVP - Measurement and Verification Plan
  • NABERS - National Australian Built Environment Rating System
  • O&M- Operations and Maintenance
  • RFP - Request for Proposal
  • ROI - Return on Investment
  • VO – Voltage Optimisation


Australian Manufacturing: Gas Efficiency Guide is a comprehensive resource that sets out practical and proven measures that deliver energy and cost savings in gas-intensive manufacturing operations.

The Guide sets out a range of options for manufacturers that wish to reduce their reliance on gas, including:

  • maintenance improvements;
  • replacing old and inefficient equipment;
  • smart redesigns of industrial processes; and
  • shifting from gas to other energy sources.

The Guide is a joint initiative of the Clean Energy Finance Corporation, the Energy Efficiency Council and the Australian Industry Group. 

You can download the Guide here.

On Thursday 4 October 2018, the Clean Energy Finance Corporation, Energy Efficiency Council and Ai Group hosted a live, interactive online event to unpack and expand upon the guide.

You can download the webinar recording and slides to hear from Tennant Reed (Ai Group), Michael East (Out Performers) and Luke Menzel (Energy Efficiency Council) on how gas-intensive businesses can reduce their energy costs and reduce their reliance on gas to remain cost competitive.