Eligible activities for businesses under the Energy Savings Scheme (ESS) and Peak Demand Reduction Scheme (PDRS) range from lighting and appliance upgrades to complex whole of site projects. Activities can be conducted at small business, commercial and industrial sites.

Activities must be undertaken by an Accredited Certificate Provider (ACP) or their representative to be eligible to create certificates. 

Activities for small businesses

Small businesses can undertake activities listed on the Upgrades for households and small businesses page. You can find an ACP to talk to about the eligibility requirements for these upgrades on the List of ACPs for business page. Information about minimum payments for small business activities is available on the Households and small businesses page.

Activities for commercial and industrial sites

Examples of eligible activities for commercial and industrial sites include:

  • commercial lighting upgrades, including general purpose building lighting, lighting for roads and public spaces, and traffic signals
  • installing or replacing refrigerated cabinets
  • installing or replacing air conditioners
  • installing or replacing certain motors
  • replacing gas fired steam boilers, hot water boilers or water heaters
  • certain blowdown efficiency measures for gas fired heating systems
  • installing heat pump water heater systems (see What you need to know about installing heat pump water heaters for more information, including an IHEAB fact sheet for businesses)
  • HVAC
  • building upgrades
  • air handling, fans and ventilation
  • process change/control systems
  • compressed air.

You can find an ACP to contact for more information on eligible energy savings and peak demand reduction activities on our List of ACPs for business page or the Energy website.

Minimum payments

The ACP will advise you of the cost of your upgrade. For some activities you are required to pay a minimum payment towards the cost of the implementation:

  • commercial lighting - $5 (excluding GST) per megawatt hour of energy saved
  • refrigerated cabinets - $200 (excluding GST) per refrigerated cabinet.

From 19 June 2024 minimum payments also apply for:

  • air conditioners in small business settings – $200 (excluding GST) per air conditioner
  • heat pump water heaters – $200 (excluding GST) per heat pump (for larger commercial systems, multiple heat pump water heaters joined by a manifold are considered one system for the minimum payment).

Your ACP or their installer can confirm the minimum payment (if any) you need to pay. Your upgrade may cost more than the minimum payment depending on the type and size of the upgrade.

The minimum payment cannot be reimbursed to you in any form. This includes gift cards or vouchers, credit notes or goods and services.