The Building Energy Efficiency Disclosure Act 2010 (Cth)
("BEED Act") forms a national scheme to disclose energy
efficiency information in the form of a Building Energy Efficiency
Certificate (BEEC), when a commercial office space of 2,000 square
metres or more is offered for sale or lease. The BEEC is to be
advertised or provided to prospective buyers or tenants prior to
any offers of sale or lease being made.
The objective of the original legislation is to ensure that
credible and meaningful energy performance reports are relayed to
prospective purchasers and lessees in order to assist them in
making informed decisions and to ensure they take into account the
economic costs and environmental impacts associated with operating
the property which they intend to purchase or lease.
What are the amendments going to do?
The intention of the amendments has been outlined in the
explanatory memorandum of the bill of the BEED Amending Act.
In the BEED Amending Act there are multiple revisions to the
The most significant and relevant changes aim to:
Reduce regulatory burdens placed on building owners and
Under the BEED Amending Act, exclusions have been implemented to
eliminate the need to disclose a BEEC in two scenarios.
First, when building owners receive unsolicited offers for the
sale or lease of their office space, they will have no obligation
to disclose energy efficiency details. However, there is currently
still ambiguity surrounding what amounts to an unsolicited offer,
thus, until this issue is addressed, owners and landlords should be
aware that they run the risk of neglecting their obligation under
the reformed BEED Act if they do not obtain a BEEC.
Secondly, transactions between wholly owned subsidiaries or
inter-company transfers will not require the disclosure of energy
performance. This allows for more efficient sales and lease
transactions between parties that likely already know the specifics
in regards to the energy performance of the premises.
Preserving existing BEEC
New owners and lessors that purchase or lease a premises in
which there is a valid existing BEEC for that property will not be
obligated to obtain a new one. This removes the need for owners and
lessors to have to reapply or pay the costly assessment and
application fee for the BEEC.
Changes to simplify the BEEC procedural requirements
The BEED Amending Act also stipulates significant adjustments to
the BEEC procedure by:
Introducing the ability to determine a commencement date for a
BEEC which is later than the date of issue. This will mean new
certificates can be issued prior to expiry to provide greater
flexibility for businesses wishing to proactively maintain
up-to-date BEECs for their property portfolios.
Removing the requirement for six pages of standard energy
efficiency guidance text on the BEEC. Live and interactive online
information about improving energy efficiency for office buildings
will be provided instead.
Addressing the ambiguity of assessment of electrical
This has been addressed by giving power to the auditing
authorities (including NABERS) to provide or approve ratings used
in BEECs directly.
Impact of the amendments
The new exemptions coupled with a more flexible certification
process will look to improve the efficiency of the administrative
process of the CBD program, as well as reducing the regulatory
burden on the industry. However, it is still unclear whether or not
the changes will impact on energy efficiency across office spaces
Warranties can be risk-shifting mechanisms when the party giving the warranty is not the party at fault for the defect.
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