Go to top of page

Launching the new NSW NABERS ESC Calculator

News | 12 Aug 2021

We are pleased to announce a new addition to our suite of online calculators: The NSW Energy Saving Certificate (ESC) Estimator.

This calculator is available for NSW buildings in the office energy sector. It helps building owners determine whether improvements in their NABERS Energy rating could generate financial incentives through the NSW Energy Saving Scheme (ESS).

What are Energy Savings Certificates or ESCs?

Under the NSW Energy Savings Scheme (ESS), when a business can prove that it has reduced its energy use without also reducing its production or service levels, it can earn Energy Saving Certificates, or ESCs.

ESCs are the currency of the ESS and are calculated based on the amount of energy saved when the business undertakes energy saving activities – for example upgrading heating, ventilation and cooling systems, or finding ways to enhance the efficiency of existing systems.

An Accredited Certificate Provider (ACP) is engaged to create, register and sell ESCs on behalf of a client. ESCs are then purchased by electricity retailers and other organisations to meet regulatory obligations and energy saving targets.

ESCs are generated through a number of approved energy saving methods designed for particular sectors and activities. The NABERS Baseline Method is an approved method that uses a NABERS Energy rating to calculate ESCs that organisations can sell on to the market.

What is the NABERS ESC Estimator?

NABERS has developed an online calculation tool to help NSW building owners determine whether improvements in their NABERS Energy rating could generate ESCs.

The NSW ESC estimator has been developed in partnership with NABERS and the ESS Safeguard Development Team. This makes the tool unique as it brings together multiple technological solutions from across Government, into one digital platform. It is a great example of the innovative outcomes that can be achieved when Government programs collaborate on digital solutions.

The tool asks users a set of questions to help them understand if their building is eligible to participate in the NSW Energy Savings Scheme (ESS) under the NABERS baseline method. It also provides an estimation of how many ESCs the building could potentially generate by reducing its energy consumption.

For this tool, users will need to have an accurate estimation of the building’s energy consumption and its predicted NABERS Energy rating. This information will be used to estimate the number of ESCs the building could potentially earn.

The tool provides an indication only and cannot be used to generate ESCs. To generate ESCs, the customer will need to engage an Accredited Certificate Provider (ACP) before the end of the current NABERS rating period. This tool is available for office buildings, however ESCs can be generated for any building type where a NABERS Energy rating exists.

Be rewarded and earn money from reducing your building’s energy use

The NSW ESS is a great opportunity for buildings to be rewarded for energy savings they make. By reducing a building’s energy consumption and improving its NABERS star rating, a building can generate ESCs that can be sold to energy retailers.

The NSW ESC estimator helps building owners understand whether energy saving activities implemented in their building could be eligible to earn money.

At Stockland we see value in generating ESCs from our NABERS rating, and to now have a tool like the ESC Estimator that helps us understand the potential additional return on investment is a real value add.
Greg Johnson, National Sustainability Manager, Stockland

Stockland has been using their NABERS energy ratings to generate Energy Saving Certificates since 2010. Over this time, they have generated more than 50,000 ESCs across the office and shopping centre sectors.

“The NABERS baseline method has been very convenient for us because we can bundle up savings across a building and earn additional revenue from these efficiencies. It’s the little things like fine tuning and optimising the buildings performance, there’s no other methodology that really accounts for those things and rolls them up into a bundled outcome.” said Stockland National Sustainability Manager Greg Johnson.

“Our business sees the value in energy efficiency projects and because of this we regularly allocate budget for these activities – ESCs is one aspect that has helped the business see the value of energy efficiency”

Start generating ESC’s in your office building

The NABERS ESC estimator is currently available for buildings in the office sector. NABERS hopes to expand this tool into other eligible sectors including hotels, shopping centres and data centres.

By developing the ESC estimator, NABERS hopes that more buildings will be rewarded for energy savings they make, and that raised awareness of the NABERS baseline method under the NSW ESS will encourage more buildings to reduce their energy consumption.

The ESC estimator is now available via the NSW ESC Estimator page on the NABERS website.

For more information about the NSW Energy Savings Scheme and the NABERS baseline method, check out our fact sheet or email us.