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Eco-design and Energy Efficiency

Energy Related Products (ERP)

Products which use sources of energy, such as televisions, computers, fans, lighting, will be subject to new EU energy efficiency requirements in the near future.  With the adoption of a framework directive 2005/32/EC in 2005, the European Union regulator laid the groundwork for specific “implementing measures” affecting a broad range of energy using products (EUP). The goal is to minimize the use of energy at the design stage and throughout production, transport, packaging, etc. Products in compliance with EUP implementing measures can be easily recognized because they will carry a CE marking. The CE marking will cover relevant product safety as well as energy efficiency requirements if applicable.

What is covered?

The scope of the framework is very broad and covers any energy related products except means of transport. Parts which are intended to be incorporated into energy-using products are also captured. Conditions and criteria for selection of new implementing measures are:
- Significant impact on the environment
- Coupled with a high volume of sales
- With clear potential for improving without excessive costs

In order to identify first targets for implementing measures (IM), the Commission relied on a network of consultants to launch a series of studies with input from stakeholders. Impact assessments were carried out to determine proportionality.

How are implementing measures adopted?

Implementing measures are adopted through a “comitology procedure” which means that
- The Commission prepares a working document based on the outcome of the study and impact assessment
- The Commission convenes a stakeholder meeting for a discussion of the working document with industry and member states (consultation forum)
- With the input of the consultation forum, the Commission prepares a draft implementing measure for discussion with member state experts (Council) and the Commission in the regulatory committee
- Once the draft implementing measure has been endorsed, the Council and the European Parliament have three months to consider the proposed legislation prior to final adoption

Working Plan 2009-2011: 

In a Communication addressed to the Council and the European Parliament, the Commission presented its working plan for 2009-2011. Click tp://www.buyusa.gov/style/graphics/link_extern.gif here to download the text.

1.       Air conditioning systems and ventilation systems
2.       Electric and fossil fueled heating equipment
3.       Food preparing equipment
4.       Network, data processing, data storing equipment
5.       Industrial and laboratory furnaces and ovens
6.       Machine tools
7.       Refrigeration and freezing equipment
8.       Sound and image processing machines and equipment
9.       Transformers
10.     Water-using equipment

Are you ready?

  • Standby and off-mode electric power consumption: on January 7, 2010 the standby losses implementing regulation will go into force for a broad range of electrical and electronic household and office equipment. The regulation sets limits for equipment  which is not to exceed 1 watt in off mode. A guideline for small and medium-sized enterprises was released in October 2009. 

Frequently asked questions:

  • Grandfathering? EUP is new approach legislation. New approach legislation grandfathers products already on the market. For example, if a product is placed on the market (meaning the shipment passed customs) on 12.31.2008 and the EUP implementing measure goes into force on 1.1.2009, there is no need to comply with the implementing measure. When a manufacturer sells a new (non-compliant) batch of the same series on 12.31.2008 which are scheduled to arrive in Europe after 1.1.2009 - then he is violating EU law. 
  • Redesigning and retrofitting? If the product has been altered in such a way that it can be considered a new model, then it has to comply with the EUP implementing measure (assuming that the implementing measure is in force by then).
  • Development of EN standards which give presumption of conformity?  Cenelec, the European Committee for electrotechnical standardization, has accepted the Commission’s mandate to develop harmonized standards. For measurement of standby power consumption, manufacturers are advised to use EN 62301 pending the development/adoption of an EN standard. For office lighting/public (street) lighting, the Commission published titles and references of transitory measurement methods - Click here.