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Energy Efficiency in Government Operations (EEGO) Policy

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The Energy Efficiency in Government Operations (EEGO) Policy aims to reduce the energy consumption of Australian Government operations with particular emphasis on building energy efficiency. The EEGO Policy forms part of the Australian Government’s climate change strategy and is administered by the Department of Industry.

Background

The EEGO Policy was announced by the Australian Government on 6 September 2006. The EEGO Policy aims to progressively improve overall Australian Government energy performance by establishing energy efficiency targets for Government agency office buildings, including those relating to tenant use. It also has a commitment to the development of similar targets for other Government buildings.

Energy efficiency improvements in Government office buildings are committed to by both building owners and Government tenants through the use of Green Lease Schedules (GLS). 

The Energy Use in the Australian Government's Operations report provides a detailed breakdown and analysis of annual energy use in Government operations and gives an indication of the overall effectiveness of the Policy. The report ensures that agencies are aware of how much energy they use and the relative efficiency of their energy use.

Office buildings

Energy intensity targets

A key objective of the EEGO Policy is for Government office buildings in each portfolio to achieve the following energy intensity targets by June 2011:

  • 7500 megajoules per person per annum for tenant light and power
  • 400 megajoules per square metre per annum for central services.

Minimum energy performance standards

The EEGO Policy contains minimum energy performance standards for Government office buildings, as a strategy for achieving the above energy intensity targets.

The minimum energy performance standards are designed to ensure that departments and agencies progressively improve their energy performance and meet the revised energy intensity targets through the procurement and ongoing management of energy efficient office buildings and appliances.

The standards vary depending upon the tenanted area and are summarised in Table 1.

Table 1 - Minimum energy performance standards for government office buildings

Element

≥ 2000 m2 net lettable area

< 2000 m2 net lettable area

100% of total building area

50% to 99% of total building area

< 50% of total building area

Base building

≥ 4.5 stars NABERS Energy, or equivalent, level of energy efficiency for whole building

≥ 4.5 stars NABERS Energy, or equivalent, level of energy efficiency

No requirement

No requirement

Tenanted area

≥ 4.5 stars NABERS Energy, or equivalent, level of energy efficiency for whole building

≥ 4.5 stars NABERS Energy, or equivalent, level of energy efficiency

≥ 4.5 stars NABERS Energy, or equivalent, level of energy efficiency

Separate digital metering and max
8 W/m2 for lighting

Lease

To include a Green Lease Schedule

To include a Green Lease Schedule

To include a Green Lease Schedule

No Requirement

Appliances

US EPA 'Energy Star' compliant* with power management features enabled at the time of supply

* Where available, fit for purpose and cost-effective.

The minimum energy performance standards apply to Government office buildings that:

  • are new, or
  • have undergone major refurbishment affecting ≥ 2000 metres squared, or
  • are subject to a new lease (or MOU where the building is Government owned) of greater than 2 years duration, including options.

Note: In terms of major refurbishments, compliance with the minimum energy performance standards is only necessary where the refurbishment involves elements that affect the energy efficiency of the building.

NABERS Energy Rating

The National Australian Built Environment Rating System (NABERS) is used by the EEGO Policy as a methodology for measuring the ongoing level of energy efficiency of office buildings. 

The EEGO Policy allows the use of alternative schemes for measuring the level of energy efficiency where it can be demonstrated that the alternative will achieve an equivalent outcome.

Green Lease Schedules

Green Lease Schedules (GLS) are intended to form part of lease documentation (or MOUs where the Government owns the building).

GLS are designed to ensure that buildings are operated at the required level of energy efficiency and cover five essential elements:

To assist in the implementation of GLS, DCCEE has produced a number of standard GLS templates that account for different types of leases (gross or net) and the proportion of the building that is tenanted.

The GLS templates also contain optional clauses covering water conservation, waste management and other issues for those agencies who wish to capture broader building sustainability issues in their leases.

Exceptions

The EEGO Policy provides some flexibility in situations where it is too difficult for a particular office building to achieve 4.5 stars NABERS Energy rating.

A lower NABERS Energy rating may be endorsed by DCCEE where it is clearly demonstrated that it is not practical or cost-effective to achieve 4.5 stars NABERS Energy rating due to factors such as location, heritage, security or operational constraints.

In such instances where it is too difficult for a particular office building to achieve a 4.5 stars NABERS Energy rating, DCCEE requires documentation to support the exception, demonstrating that sufficient market testing has been carried out and that the highest possible NABERS Energy rating will be achieved.

Existing buildings

For existing office buildings where major refurbishment or lease renewals are not planned, agencies are encouraged to obtain a NABERS Energy rating, or equivalent, and develop an EMP. This will further assist agencies in achieving their energy intensity targets.

Annual energy reporting

EEGO Policy requires each agency to report its energy consumption against core performance indicators.

The reporting requirements aim to ensure that agencies are aware of how much energy they use and the relative efficiency of their energy use. Agency energy data is to be supplied to DCCEE by the close of business on the last working day of October each year.

As a minimum, this report should include the energy consumption of the previous financial year and the department's or agency's progress towards achieving the Policy's energy intensity targets for office buildings.

DCCEE consolidates the energy data and reports from all agencies into one report, Energy Use in the Australian Government's Operations. The consolidated report is tabled in Parliament each year.

Department of Defence provisions

The EEGO Policy contains unique provisions for the Department of Defence because it accounts for approximately half of the energy used by Australian Government operations.

The Policy required Defence to develop a comprehensive energy management strategy by the end of 2006. This strategy included the establishment of a pilot metering, monitoring and management program for a selection of large Defence bases.

The energy management strategy was reviewed in 2008 and a progress report on the pilot study provided to the government. This included recommendations for the implementation of a refined metering, monitoring and management program on bases responsible for approximately 80 per cent of Defence's energy consumption.

The EEGO Policy requires sub-meters to be progressively installed at all relevant Defence bases. This will ensure that energy performance reporting by 2011 is carried out against specific end-use categories, rather than the current single 'Defence establishments' category.

Administration of the policy

RET has overall responsibility for the administration of the EEGO Policy.