Press release

Brussels, 22 March 2017

Changes to the energy label agreed between the European Commission, Council and Parliament must be introduced quickly so citizens can enjoy the long-awaited energy savings the revision will bring, said ECOS and the European Environmental Bureau (EEB) today.

European institutions struck a deal on 21 March to revert to the original A-G closed scale for the EU Energy Label, getting rid of confusing plusses (A+, A++, A+++). But they failed to set a common deadline for the implementation of the new label, and rescaling could even take place after 2030 for heating products.

For white goods and televisions the new labels have to be introduced no later than 2020.

The institutions also announced the development of a product database for Europe, which should start in 2019 and will allow for the effective monitoring and future rescaling of the Energy Label.

Member states and market surveillance authorities will have access to real-time data and a complete overview of the market, while consumers will benefit from an easier comparison of different products’ energy efficiency.

Laura Degallaix, ECOS Director, said:

The decision to revert the Energy Label back to its original A-G format has been long awaited. But if Europe is to truly reduce its energy consumption, the European Commission will need to ramp up efforts to make this a fast and smooth transition. Combined with the announced product database, businesses will have access to a level playing field, and consumers can feel confident they will reduce household bills and energy consumption. It’s a win-win situation.”

Pieter De Pous, EEB Policy Director, said:

This new, improved energy label will promote the most efficient products to consumers, giving them an unbiased, trustworthy alternative to aggressive advertising by companies falsely claiming to be green. For consumers to truly reap its rewards, the energy label must now be applied to more products – beginning with ICT, office equipment and smaller electrical appliances.”

He added:

“Sadly the agreement fails to protect the rights of European consumers in case of non-compliant products. Member States successfully fought amendments brought in by the European Parliament which would have secured a more ambitious timeline and compensation for consumers who purchased a product declared non compliant outside the warranty period.”

ENDS

Notes to editors:

ECOS, the European Environmental Citizens’ Organisation for Standardisation, defends environmental interests in the standards development process at European and international level. As part of this, ECOS is heavily involved with work on Ecodesign, providing expert input on all products covered by the legislation.

The European Environmental Bureau is Europe’s largest federation of environmental citizens’ organisations, with over 150 organisations across 30 countries containing around 15 million members and supporters in total.

The Coolproducts campaign is a coalition of European NGOs, including ECOS and the European Environmental Bureau, working to ensure that energy efficiency labelling and legislation encouraging the environmentally friendly design of new products truly work for European citizens and governments.

Contact:

Mauro Anastasio, Communications Officer, European Environmental Bureau

Mauro.anastasio@eeb.org – +32 (0) 2289 13 09

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With the support of thr European Union (LIFE Programme and European COmmission). This work reflects the author's views and does not commit donors.