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Introducing the ISO 50001 family of standards

08 April 2015
Kit Oung, author of ISO 50001 energy management systems – requirements with guidance for use, shares more about the complementary standards and what they mean.

Since the publication of ISO 50001 energy management systems – requirements with guidance for use in 17 June 2011, the ISO panel of energy management experts has been working diligently on a suite of documents providing additional guidance on various aspects of ISO 50001.

The complementary standards are:

  • ISO 50002:2014 Energy audits: Requirements with guidance for use

  • ISO 50003:2014 Energy management systems — Requirements for bodies providing audit and certification of energy management systems

  • ISO 50004: 2014 Energy management systems — Guidance for the implementation, maintenance and improvement of an energy management system

  • ISO 50006: 2014 Energy management systems — Measuring energy performance using energy baselines (EnB) and energy performance indicators (EnPI) — General principles and guidance

  • ISO 50015:2014 Energy management systems — Measurement and verification of energy performance of organisations — General principles and guidance

This article gives brief – two paragraph – overviews of the new standards, how they interact with ISO 50001, thus helping to identify the additional standards that are appropriate to the needs of organisations implementing ISO 50001.

ISO 50002: Framework for finding energy performance improvement opportunities

Developed and based on a European standard of the same name, EN16247-1, ISO 50002 uses the terminologies of ISO 50001 and describes a best practice framework to identify energy saving opportunities. Users of the standard follow standardised steps when identifying opportunities for improvement.

Using this standard, organisations implementing ISO 50001 have a traceable and verifiable audit trail of how each energy performance improvement opportunities came to be. This is particularly useful when preparing an ISO 50001 energy review.

ISO 50003: Framework for certification bodies in ISO 50001

ISO 50003 is developed to address the additional requirements placed on Certification Bodies providing ISO 50001 certification services. Designed based on ISO 17021 – the primary standard for Certification Bodies carrying out management systems audit such as ISO 9001 and ISO 14001, this standard describes the competences of lead energy management systems auditors, minimum information to audit, the duration of audits and requirements for multi-site sampling.

Apart from the formulas to calculate what constitutes “representative sampling” and “sample size” in multi-site organisations, this standard is not intended to be read and used by organisations implementing ISO 50001.

ISO 50004: Guidance for implementing ISO 50001

ISO 50004, like ISO 9004 and ISO 14004, gives organisation examples on how to implement, maintain and improve their ISO 50001-based energy management system. The examples and practical boxes in ISO 50004 give examples, ideas and additional suggestions that an organisation may want to use when meeting the requirements of ISO 50001.

Also, like other ISO XXX4 guidance, no organisations can be certified to ISO 50004. The examples and practical boxes are merely for illustrative purposes and are not the only way for meeting ISO 50001 requirements. In addition, following all the examples in ISO 50004 does not guarantee an organisation to be successfully certified in ISO 50001. The key to be successful is using ISO 50004 is to select, adapt, and improve on the examples presented such that they become appropriate and relevant to the organisation.

ISO 50006: Framework for setting appropriate energy baselines and energy performance indicators

Energy savings, for more than 40 years, has been driven by the innovating and applying energy efficient products. ISO 50001 introduced a new and timely concept called “energy performance”. This is an important concept because it is similar to “key performance indicators” many business managers would be familiar. It is also important as it defines, for a very first time, energy savings can be achieved by many means: energy use, energy consumption, and energy efficiency.

ISO 50006, also using examples and practical boxes, provide give examples, ideas and approaches where organisations can define, measure, monitor, and review their energy baselines and energy performance. When the baselines and energy performance indicators are appropriate, repeatable and statistically significant, it can be used to forecast future energy consumption, monitor energy performance and apply appropriate corrective and preventive actions – a key requirement of ISO 50001.

ISO 50015: Framework for verifying improvements in energy performance

ISO 50015 describes standardised steps to quantify and verify the effectiveness of energy performance improvement projects against its intended (or planned) outcome. It does not prescribe or recommend which approaches or calculation methods should be adopted when verifying energy savings.

Although strictly not a requirement of ISO 50001, the ability to measure and verify energy savings ensure data based calculations, increased traceability and verifiability of energy savings claims. This also adds quantifiable value to implementing ISO 50001 and maintains and enhances top managements’ continued commitment in saving energy.

Kit Oung is an Energy Savings Director at Energy Efficien:ology, board member of Energy Managers’ Association, and Advisory member of 2degrees Network. He is the author of Energy Management in Business: The Manager’s Guide to Maximising and Sustaining Energy Reduction (Gower) and Energy Audits: The Key to Delivering Real Energy Reduction (BSI). To continue the discussion online, connect with Kit at Linkedin.