Energy Act 2008

An Act to make provision relating to gas importation and storage; to make provision in relation to electricity generated from renewable sources; to make provision relating to electricity transmission; to make provision about payments to small-scale generators of low-carbon electricity; to make provision about the decommissioning of energy installations and wells; to make provision about the management and disposal of waste produced during the operation of nuclear installations; to make provision relating to petroleum licences; to make provision about third party access to oil and gas infrastructure and modifications of pipelines; to make provision about reports relating to energy matters; to make provision about the duties of the Gas and Electricity Markets Authority; to make provision about payments in respect of the renewable generation of heat; to make provision relating to gas meters and electricity meters and provision relating to electricity safety; to make provision about the security of equipment, software and information relating to nuclear matters; and for connected purposes.

Energy Act 2011

An Act to make provision for the arrangement and financing of energy efficiency improvements to be made to properties by owners and occupiers; about the energy efficiency of properties in the private rented sector; about the promotion by energy companies of reductions in carbon emissions and home-heating costs; about information relating to energy consumption, efficiency and tariffs; for increasing the security of energy supplies; about access to upstream petroleum infrastructure and downstream gas processing facilities; about a special administration regime for energy supply companies; about designations under the Continental Shelf Act 1964; about licence modifications relating to offshore transmission and distribution of electricity; about the security of nuclear construction sites; about the decommissioning of nuclear sites and offshore infrastructure; for the use of pipelines for carbon capture and storage; for an annual report on contribution to carbon emissions reduction targets; for action relating to the energy efficiency of residential accommodation in England; for the generation of electricity from renewable sources; about renewable heat incentives in Northern Ireland; about the powers of the Coal Authority; for an amendment of section 137 of the Energy Act 2004; for the amendment and repeal of measures relating to home energy efficiency; and for connected purposes.

Energy Performance of Buildings Directive

The building sector is crucial for achieving the EU's energy and environmental goals.  At the same time, better and more energy efficient buildings improve the quality of citizens' life while bringing additional benefits to the economy and the society.

To boost energy performance of buildings, the EU has established a legislative framework that includes the Energy Performance of Buildings Directive 2010/31/EU (EPBD) and the Energy Efficiency Directive 2012/27/EU. Together, the directives promote policies that will help

  • achieve a highly energy efficient and decarbonised building stock by 2050
  • create a stable environment for investment decisions
  • enable consumers and businesses to make more informed choices to save energy and money


Following the introduction of energy performance rules in national building codes, buildings today consume only half as much as typical buildings from the 1980s.

Both directives were amended, as part of the Clean energy for all Europeans package, in 2018 and 2019.  In particular, the Directive amending the Energy Performance of Buildings Directive (2018/844/EU) introduces new elements and sends a strong political signal on the EU’s commitment to modernise the buildings sector in light of technological improvements and increase building renovations.

EU countries need to transpose the new and revised rules into national law by 10 March 2020.  The UK had already implemented the Directive as it stood in 2012 prior to departing the EU.

The Commission has introduced a renovation wave of public and private buildings, as part of the European Green Deal.  It aims to take further action and create the necessary conditions to scale up renovations and reap the significant saving potential of the building sector.

European Communities Act 1972

This historical Act of Parliament made provision for the enlargement of the European Communities to include the United Kingdom, together with (for certain purposes) the Channel Islands, the Isle of Man and Gibraltar.  Now largely repealed, it is relevant as the origin of the introduction of energy assessments to meet the Energy Performance of Buildings Directive (EPBD) which remains a guiding principle in UK public policy.

The Energy Efficiency (Private Rented Property) (England and Wales) (Amendment) Regulations 2019

These regulations were made to amend The Energy Efficiency (Private Rented Property) (England and Wales) Regulations 2015.  They removed the ability for building owners (landlords) to claim an exemption from making improvements on the basis that there was no grant funding available.  In place of this they established a cost cap that has to be spent improving the property to try and meet the minimum standard.

The Energy Efficiency (Private Rented Property) (England and Wales) Regulations 2015

These regulations were made to establish the Minimum Energy Efficiency Standards (MEES) for rental properties in the domestic and non-domestic markets in England and Wales.  They were required by the Energy Act 2011.

The Energy Performance of Buildings (England and Wales) Regulations 2012

These regulations were made using powers conferred by section 2(2) of the European Communities Act 1972 and by section 74 of the Energy Act 2011.  They establish the legal framework for a number of statutory energy assessments and certificates including Energy Performance Certificates (EPC), Display Energy Certificates (DEC) and Air Conditioning Energy Inspections (ACEI).

The Renewable Heat Incentive (Amendment to the Energy Act 2008) Regulations 2011

An amendment to the definitions of "biogas" and "biomass" for the purposes of the Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI).  The scheme was first established under the Energy Act 2008.