Streamlined Energy and Carbon Reporting (SECR)

What UK businesses need to know about Streamlined Energy and Carbon Reporting (SECR) and where to get help.

Not a business? Go to our British Gas residential website for help.

In this article

What is SECR?

Who's affected by the SECR regulations?

Who's exempt from SECR?

What needs to be reported under SECR?

When does SECR need to be reported?

Are there costs associated with SECR?

More information about SECR

Frequently asked questions

What is SECR?

Streamlined Energy Carbon reporting (SECR) was introduced by the UK government on 1 April 2019 when the Companies (Directors Report) and Limited Liability Partnerships (Energy and Carbon Report) Regulations 2018 came into force.

The introduction of SECR coincides with the end of the Carbon Reduction Commitment (CRC) Energy Efficiency scheme. The new regulations require more UK businesses to disclose their energy and carbon emissions than under the CRC scheme as part of their annual reporting obligations.

SECR builds on but does not replace existing reporting requirements for some companies like greenhouse gas (GHG) reporting for quoted companies, the Energy Saving Opportunity Scheme (ESOS), Climate Change Agreements (CCA), and the EU Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS).

In making these changes, the UK government aims to simplify energy and carbon reporting requirements, whilst making sure more businesses have the information to be energy efficient, reduce energy costs and improve security of supply.

Who's affected by the SECR regulations?

SECR applies to quoted companies, large unquoted companies and large limited liability partnerships (LLPs) that fall within the following definitions, unless they meet certain exemption criteria:

1. Quoted companies of any size that already report under the mandatory greenhouse gas reporting (GHG) regulations

2. Unquoted large companies incorporated in the UK, which are required to prepare a Directors’ Report under Part 15 of the Companies Act 2006

3. Large limited liability partnerships (LLPs)

Unquoted companies or LLPs are defined as 'large' if they meet at least two of the following three criteria in a reporting year:

  • 250 employees or more
  • £36 million turnover or more
  • £18m balance sheet or more

The criteria for 'large' differs from the ESOS regulations.

Charities, not-for-profit companies or others carrying out public activities, such as companies owned by universities, academies or NHS Trusts should check whether they meet the qualifying criteria.

Private sector organisations which fall outside of the scope of the new regulations are encouraged to report voluntarily.

Who's exempt from SECR?

Companies and Limited Liability Partnerships (LLPs) will be exempt from the Streamlined Energy and Carbon Reporting (SECR) regulations where:

  • Energy use is less than 40,000 MWh over the reporting period (as for ESOS)
  • UK subsidiaries are covered by their parent company’s group report
  • It’s impractical to obtain some or all global energy use data, so long as this can be justified
  • Publicly reporting on energy use could be deemed as commercially sensitive and prejudicial to the company’s interests

What needs to be reported under SECR?

Eligible companies are required to disclose their annual greenhouse gas emissions and total underlying global energy use. They must also report on energy efficiency actions completed during each compliance year. Businesses must publish this information as part of their annual reporting obligations along with any existing requirements for greenhouse gas (GHG) reporting and Energy Saving Opportunity Scheme (ESOS). The report range is the organisational financial year rather than the fixed Financial year.

  • Energy use and GHG emissions figures from the previous year (exempt in year 1)
  • At least one emissions intensity metric
  • Narrative description of measures taken to improve energy efficiency and the methodology used

Quoted companies

  • Global scope 1 and 2 GHG emissions from activities which the company is responsible for, including combustion of fuel and operation of any facility and annual emissions from the purchase of electricity, heat, steam or cooling by the company for its own use.
  • Underlying global energy use. Total energy consumption and emissions split by UK and offshore use.

Large unquoted companies and LLPs

  • UK energy use from gas, electricity and transport 1 as a minimum
  • Associated GHG emissions

Scope 3 GHG emissions remains voluntary but is strongly recommended for material emissions sources.

When does SECR need to be reported?

Quoted companies have been reporting on energy and carbon since September 2013. The new requirements under SECR apply to reports for financial years starting on or after 1 April 2019.  The table below gives an example of the first financial year for organisations with different reporting year start dates.  The first publication of reports is expected to be filed with Companies House in 2020 (e.g. those which cover financial years to 31 March 2020).

Usual reporting year

  • 1 January to 31 December
  • 1 April to 31 March

First financial year that relevant reports must comply with SECR

  • 1 January 2020 to 31 December 2020
  • 1 April 2019 to 31 March 2020

Where financial reporting years started before 1 April 2019, quoted companies are already required to include specific mandatory greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions information.

Are there costs associated with SECR?

Unlike the CRC scheme, there's no 'carbon tax' on businesses under SECR, which means that businesses will only pay tax on energy through suppliers.

But any savings will be offset by an increase in Climate Change Levy (CCL) rates, for businesses that pay the CCL, from April 2019.

More information about SECR

For information about the conversion factors for greenhouse gas reporting, visit the government website .

A new set of conversion factors are produced each year along with a methodology paper explaining how the conversion factors are derived.

For environment reporting guidelines to help you comply with SECR, read this government information .

If you have any questions for us, please get in touch using the details on your most recent bill.

Frequently asked questions

Where do I find my total energy use in kilowatt hour (kWh)?

A: You can find your total energy use in kWh on your bill under 'Details of charges'. It will tell you if this is actual or estimated. If you are a user of our E360 product you can use this to report on your energy use for meters that are included in the product.

What is the Greenhouse Gas (GHG) Protocol?

A: Greenhouse Gas (GHG) Protocol is an internationally accepted accounting tool used to understand, quantify, and manage greenhouse gas emissions. In 2015 an amendment was published for the GHG Protocol Corporate Standard, updating the accounting and reporting guidelines for purchased electricity, heat, steam or cooling (known as scope 2 emissions). This amendment allows companies to report using a market-based method that recognises the purchase of renewable energy and the positive impact this has.

What is the market-based approach for reporting GHG emissions?

A: A market-based approach reports emissions from the electricity that a company has bought. Different electricity suppliers and contracts emit more, or less greenhouse gases depending on the energy source or technology.

We tell customers the fuel mix and GHG emissions associated with our tariffs.

What is the location-based approach for reporting GHG emissions?

A: A location-based approach reports the average emissions for the region-wide grid on which a company facility is located using grid-average emission factor data.

It's not based on the purchasing decisions your business has made when buying electricity.

How do I find out my company’s intensity ratio?

A: Annex F of the SECR government guidelines  provides guidance on measuring the intensity ratio of your company’s industry sector.

How does British Gas calculate the emission factors for its electricity products?

A: Emission factors are calculated for each British Gas product by multiplying the megawatt hours of power generated by each type of generation technology for a 12-month period up to 31 March each year (to align with the Fuel Mix Disclosure reporting year) by a corresponding emission factor for each technology type. Emission factors for each technology type are taken from Ofgem, using the published values corresponding to the relevant Fuel Mix Disclosure reporting year.

The Ofgem emission factors cover carbon dioxide only, and do not include other Kyoto greenhouse gases [GHGs] such as methane which may be emitted by some forms of electricity generation.

Ofgem allocates a zero g CO2/kWh emission factor to all electricity generation classed as 'renewable', which includes energy from waste and biofuel. For wholesale electricity purchased by British Gas, the UK residual mix emission factor for the corresponding Fuel Mix Disclosure reporting year is used.

See our renewable electricity for business for more information.

Do licensed suppliers have to provide an annual statement of supply?

A: No. It's no longer mandatory for licensed suppliers to provide an annual statement of energy consumption as it was under the CRC Energy Efficiency Scheme. 

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  1. Transport energy should include business usage where the company is supplied with the transport fuel, but not journeys where the fuel is paid for indirectly. For example, fuel consumed for business use in company cars, fleet and private/hire cars (including where employees are reimbursed for business mileage) and on-site vehicles are included. But this does not include fuel associated with air, rail or taxi journeys that the company does not operate, or fuel for the transportation of goods contracted to a third party.