What is the SECR Scheme?

Streamlined Energy and Carbon Reporting (SECR) is a mandatory UK reporting scheme, completed annually by a wide range of businesses, charities, and Academy trusts.

The scheme was implemented in April 2019 and requires businesses to report their annual Greenhouse Gas Emissions (GHG)’s in line with their financial year. With the submission listed publicly within your company’s house directors report, SECR is a wonderful opportunity to pro-actively reduce your carbon emissions with the backing and support of your financial team.

The accuracy of SECR is extremely important, for example using the correct conversion factors, including an intensity metric and understanding your legal structure.  Working with an energy consultant although not mandatory is recommended especially during the verification process.

SECR has been introduced to ultimately reduce carbon emissions, although will naturally increase the profile of environmental reporting within your organisation.  As we move towards a greener future, understanding your emissions year on year will be critical to delivery of additional schemes with similar outcomes.

Who does it apply to?

SECR must be completed by all quoted companies of any size, as well as ‘large’ unquoted companies, Academy Trusts and Limited Liability Partnerships (LLP)’s who meet with 2 of the following criteria:

  1. Turnover of over £36 million
  2. Balance sheet of over £18 million
  3. Employ more than 250 employees.

The level of reporting does change slightly depending on what category your company falls under, however all will need to provide the previous year’s energy usage data, GHG emissions, at least one intensity ration and the methodology used. 

Quoted companies must report scope 1 & 2 emissions and are encouraged to report scope 3 emissions whilst Large unquoted companies, LLP’s and academy trusts must report scope 1 & 2 emissions and scope 3 emissions from business travel.  Further explanation as to the Scopes are contained overleaf.

Public sector organisations and companies who use less than 40,000 kwh are exempt from SECR.   There are additional clauses within the exemptions, and we would recommend that these are reviewed to ensure full exemption.  Any exempt large company should continue to declare non-completion within their directors’ report.

Quick Facts – SECR.UK

The SECR process was new to us all in 2020 and DB Group guided us through the intricacies of the scheme skilfully and efficiently. 

Jonathan Molloy, Bursar-Erskine Stewart’s Melville Schools 

How can DB Group Help?

SECR can be complex from the offset.  Initial questions such as: •We have an overseas parent company therefore who is responsible for our SECR submission?

•We are an independent school within a trust – Does this mean we need to comply?
•Are charitable organisations included in SECR?
•Are we a quoted or Unquoted Company? 
•What information do we submit and in what format?
•How do we know if our data is correct – How do we verify this?

DB Group can help with the process from start to finish and manage your SECR requirements. We will assess your organisational boundaries and the operations that fall under your SECR reporting.

Bryan and his team offer a fantastic service. They are client-first orientated and have the expert knowledge to advise. In 2019/2020 Bryan assisted YBS with SECR, water-saving projects at our Bradford HO site and water account management services. As a client, I would recommend Bryan and his team to any business wanting assistance on environmental legislation and wider services.

Elliot Kilbride, Environmental Lead- Yorkshire Building Society

DB Group will request a comprehensive list of supplies for the site, e.g., gas and electricity supplies, combustion of gas/fuel in stationary and mobile equipment and transport. (company cars and fleet vehicles on business use, personal/hire cars on business use, onsite transport, etc.). This will enable us to identify the operational boundaries of the business, i.e., the type of activities/supplies/sources associated with energy consumption and emissions, to categorise them into the scopes for accounting and reporting (Scope 1, 2 and 3).

The data will be verified and quantified to ensure accuracy and delivered in a format ready to upload within your directors’ report and ensure compliance is met.

SECR Submission Report

At DB Group we aim to simplify SECR further and to ensure that you get value from this scheme.  We fully believe that SECR can start our journey towards a decarbonised future.  Let us explain how this can be achieved.
Find out more about SECR (Streamlined Energy and Carbon Reporting)

Bryan McAlpine of DB Group supported George Watson’s College in preparing their first Streamline Energy and Carbon Reporting (SECR) return in 2020.  This was a new process for us and one that had to be managed alongside the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic. 

At the outset Bryan clearly set out the reporting deadlines and the information which had to be collected.  Throughout the process, DB Group assisted with the collection, summarisation and analysis of data and advised on technical and reporting matters.  They also project managed the whole process, agreeing timescales for completion of tasks and reviewing progress at periodic meetings.  They took on most of the stress of ensuring we met our reporting deadline and the quality of the data supporting our submission was largely due to their technical knowledge, hard work and effort

James Mills, Bursar-George Watson’s College


What are the Scopes

  • Scope 1: Emissions are consumed Gas emissions from activities that are owned or controlled by the business such as company vehicles and boilers.
  • Scope 2: Are emissions from the consumption of purchased energy such as electricity and steam. These emissions are a consequence of the business, but the generation is not owned/controlled by the business.
  • Scope 3: A consequence of the business but the source is not owned by the business and are not classed as scope 2 e.g., business travel in private cars. Water and Waste are also examples of Scope 3 emissions.