Energy Companies Obligation (ECO)

The Energy Companies Obligation (ECO) is an energy efficiency programme that was introduced into Great Britain at the beginning of 2013. It replaces two previous schemes, the Carbon Emissions Reduction Target (CERT) and the Community Energy Saving Programme (CESP).

ECO places legal obligations on the larger energy suppliers to deliver energy efficiency measures to domestic energy users. It operates alongside the Green Deal which is designed to help people make energy efficiency improvements to buildings by allowing them to pay the costs through their energy bills rather than upfront.

ECO is intended to  work alongside the Green Deal to provide additional support in the domestic sector, with a particular focus on vulnerable consumer groups and hard-to-treat homes.

ECO targets

Under the rules of ECO, energy suppliers are obliged to help improve the energy efficiency of their domestic customers’ buildings in three distinct areas:

  1. Carbon Emissions Reduction Obligation
    Under the Carbon Emissions Reduction Obligation, energy companies must concentrate efforts on hard-to-treat homes and measures that cannot be fully funded through the Green Deal. Solid wall insulation and hard-to-treat cavity wall insulation are the primary areas for focus under this target. Other insulation measures and connections to district heating systems are also eligible if they are promoted as part of a package that includes solid wall insulation or hard-to-treat cavity wall insulation.
  2. Community Obligation
    Under the Carbon Saving Community Obligation,  energy companies must focus on the provision of insulation measures and connections to domestic district heating systems supplying areas of low income. This target has a sub-target, which states that at least 15 per cent of each supplier’s Carbon Saving Community Obligation must be achieved by promoting measures to low income and vulnerable households living in rural areas.
  3. Home Heating Cost Reduction Obligation
    Under the Home Heating Cost Reduction Obligation, energy suppliers are required to provide measures which improve the ability of low income and vulnerable households (the ‘Affordable Warmth Group’) to heat their homes. This includes actions that result in heating savings, such as the replacement or repair of a boiler for example.

Publications and updates

  • Published: 16th Apr 2014
  • Open letters & correspondence
  • 1 Associated documents
Ofgem’s further response to the government’s consultation: The Future of the Energy Company Obligation

  • Published: 14th Apr 2014
  • News, updates and statements
  • 0 Associated documents
Please be advised that the ECO Register will be unavailable on the dates indicated in this publication due to essential maintenance.

  • Published: 21st Mar 2014
  • News, updates and statements
  • 0 Associated documents
This update explains the proposed changes the government has made for the Energy Companies Obligation and our planned guidance revisions to incorporate these.

  • Published: 11th Mar 2014
  • Consultations & responses
  • 1 Associated documents
This letter is our response to sections of DECC’s consultation: The Future of the Energy Company Obligation.

  • Published: 31st Oct 2013
  • Decisions
  • 0 Associated documents
As a result of this consultation we have published the Energy Companies Obligation (ECO): Supplementary Guidance on Hard-to-Treat Cavity Wall Insulation.

  • Published: 27th Aug 2013
  • Closed: 24th Sep 2013
  • Consultations & responses
  • 59 Associated documents
Consultation on our proposed requirements for demonstrating the characteristics of a cavity wall to which insulation has been installed.

  • Published: 17th Jul 2013
  • Decisions
  • 17 Associated documents
This letter summarises the key issues raised in response to our consultation on how to account for the percentage of a measure installed ('P') when calculating Energy Companies Obligation scores.

  • Published: 23rd May 2013
  • Closed: 20th Jun 2013
  • Consultations & responses
  • 1 Associated documents
This consultation sets out our reasons for removing 'P' from the formula for scoring measures under ECO, instead requiring suppliers to calculate the percentage of measure installed within SAP/RdSAP and seeks views on this proposal.

  • Published: 15th Mar 2013
  • Decisions
  • 1 Associated documents
This document summarises the issues raised by respondents on the Energy Companies Obligation (ECO) 2012 – 2015: Consultation on Guidance for Suppliers. We explain the changes we have made to the final and published guidance, and why.

  • Published: 18th Jan 2013
  • Other
  • 1 Associated documents
This letter summarises the key issues raised in response to our consultation on the methodologies for calculating the number of domestic customers, the amount of electricity and gas supply for phases 2 and 3 of the Energy Companies Obligation scheme.