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New energy labels for EU household appliances

New energy labels for EU household appliances

New energy label

Labels on household appliances such as fridges, washing machines and ovens will have to include more information on energy consumption, following a vote by MEPs on Wednesday. Parliament has approved a new layout of the EU energy efficiency label introducing additional "plus" classes to the familiar colour scheme.

Günther Oettinger, European Commissioner for Energy, said: "Today's adoption of the recast of the Energy Labelling Directive by the European Parliament is a significant step towards reaching our "2020" energy savings target". It paves the way for a new energy label that will help consumers saving energy and the EU to honour its commitment on the reduction of CO2 emissions".

With today's adoption in Parliament, the directive has been formally adopted and is expected to be published in the Official Journal in June. A political agreement between the Member States in the Council and the Parliament had already been reached on 18 November 2009. Member States will have one year to transpose it into national legislation.

With the new directive, the existing labelling scale from A-G will be further differentiated by adding the new classes A+, A++ and A+++ on top of class "A". The new scale will further increase competition between manufacturers for the benefit of the consumer and of climate change mitigation. It will also help them to advertise their products better. The Directive foresees that advertisement containing energy-related information or price must include a reference to the energy efficiency class of the product. This helps consumers to assess the running costs when buying new household appliances.

Based on the Directive, the Commission will identify a number of products in the commercial and industrial sector with energy-saving potential which will also fall under the new labelling system. New products such as televisions, water heaters and boilers are planned to be adopted under the new labelling rules.

Background

The first Energy Labelling Directive had been adopted in 1992 and the label became one of the instruments for fostering energy efficiency products. The recast of the Directive aims to extend its scope beyond the household sector and have more energy efficient products available in public procurement. Energy Labelling and Ecodesign measures are contributing significantly towards the target to improve energy efficiency by 20% by 2020.

Energy Labelling Directive - Briefing

Further information, European Commission


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