Tag Archive | "energy efficiency"

MEPs call for more ambitious A-G scale for energy labels


To kept up with the time of the technologies, the EU Parliament voted for a simpler and more stringent A to G scale for the energy labels, which shows the energy efficiency of the household appliances.

 

While the proposal was discussed, MEPs mentioned that the most appliances on the market now meet the ‘class A’. The ‘A’ requirement was first set in 2010 and in the subsequent years, they only added more pluses (A+, A++, A+++). Setting tougher requirements will create incentives to improve energy efficiency still further, they argue.

“Today´s vote gave new life to the Energy Efficiency Label, making the labelling system stronger, safer, clearer and future-oriented. Innovations such as the database, the Quick Response code and above all the reference to smart appliances set the framework for a new ´energy label 2.0´” said rapporteur Dario Tamburrano (EFDD, IT) after the vote.

“Rescaled labels for existing product groups” should be introduced within 21 months and 6 years (depending on product type) of the entry into force of the legislation, so as “to ensure a homogenous A-G scale”, says the amended text. Any future rescale should aim for validity of at least 10 years and be triggered when 25 percent of products sold on  the EU market fall into the top energy efficiency class A, or when 50 percent of these products fall into the top two energy efficiency classes A+B.

MEPs makes clear that at first the class A,(and in product groups showing rapid technological progress, classes A and B), should be empty before introducing new rescaling or labelling.

When energy classes F and G are not allowed for certain product groups, these should be shown on the label in grey, and the standard dark green to red spectrum of the label should cover A-E, they add.

The label should contain information about the energy efficiency class of the product model and its absolute consumption in kWh, displayed per year or per “any relevant period of time”, says the text.

The testing methods and environment, “both for suppliers and market surveillance authorities, should be as close as possible to the real-life usage of a given product by the average consumer”, say MEPs, who asked the European Commission to publish EU “transitional measurement and calculation methods in relation to those product-specific requirements.”

MEPs also advocated the setting up of a “product database” consisting of a consumer website, with information on each product, and a “compliance” interface, i.e. an electronic platform supporting the work of national market surveillance authorities, available in the country’s languages.

MEPS will now start negotiations with the Council on the final form of the legislation.

 

The energy efficiency of the appliance is rated in terms of a set of energy efficiency classes from A to G on the label, A being the most energy efficient, G the least efficient. The labels also give other useful information to the customer as they choose between various models. The information should also be given in catalogues and included by internet retailers on their websites.

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UK Green Investment Bank aims to spend $1.2 billion this year


The U.K. Green Investment Bank aims to boost the capital it commits to carbon-cutting projects to 700 million pounds ($1.2 billion) this year as it chases deals in offshore wind, waste and energy efficiency.

The bank, capitalized with 3.8 billion pounds of government funds, allocated 668 million pounds to clean-energy projects in the year through March, Chief Executive Officer Shaun Kingsbury said today in a telephone interview. That’s up from 635 million pounds the previous year, though the bank only began operations in November 2012.

“I’d hope for more than 700 million for the financial year we’re in, but it’s not about allocating capital; it’s about the quality of the projects,” he said. It will take another “two to three years at least” to commit the full 3.8 billion pounds.

The bank was set up by the government to spur spending in renewables, using its own cash to leverage further funding from private companies. Kingsbury said that progress so far indicates every pound the bank commits has leveraged almost another three, with 3.3 billion pounds of private money flowing from the 1.3 billion pounds he’s allocated so far.

“Our investment levels were up, our green impact was up, and much more of that is direct investment,” Kingsbury said, referring to last year’s performance. He said he’s working on some offshore wind deals that he hopes to announce this year, and waste-to-energy and biomass plans that may be announced as soon as next quarter. He didn’t disclose further details.

‘Chunky Transactions’

Offshore wind is “always going to be a big portion of our capital, probably our biggest sector,” Kingsbury said. “These are very large, chunky transactions, usually more than 100 million pounds.”

Offshore wind, waste and energy efficiency are the bank’s three core areas, to which it aims to commit 80 percent of its funds. In the energy-efficiency sphere, Kingsbury said he’s trying to persuade more councils and local authorities to take advantage of loans from the bank to switch old sodium street lamps to energy-efficient LEDs.

“We could cut both emissions and the costs by 70 to 80 percent with existing technology,” Kingsbury said. Those loans are “sculpted so that you always pay back the interest and capital out of the energy savings you’ve made. So it’s light at the front and the repayments get back-ended and heavier at the end when you’re saving more and more money.”

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