EPA Announces Changes To ENERGY STAR® Program
Recently, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced that, effective Jan. 1, 2011, any product seeking participation in the federal ENERGY STAR® program is required to have their energy performance evaluated by a third-party certification body prior to product labeling. In 2011 and early 2012 the EPA will revise the requirements for all of the high-tech product categories. As a result, manufacturers will be subjected to re-qualify pre-2011 existing products to the newly revised requirements with an EPA-accredited Certification Body (CB).
The revised requirements apply to the following high-tech product categories:
- Televisions and Displays
- Computers & Computer Servers
- Set-Top Boxes & Cable Boxes
- Cordless Phones
- Battery Charging Systems
- Audio/Video Products
- Imaging Equipment
With dynamic changes taking place in the regulatory environment, it is important to understand the latest criteria for the ENERGY STAR certification process. As an official EPA-recognized certification body, Underwriters Laboratories (UL) is committed to helping manufacturers comply with the latest requirements, conserve resources, reduce energy costs and deliver quality products. By offering premier qualification and verification testing on 30 ENERGY STAR product categories and as an EPA-recognized CB for 35 product categories, UL is also providing product manufacturers, engineers and designers with various educational resources on the latest enhancements to the ENERGY STAR program, including a webinar series, podcast and micro-site.
Many product manufacturers have raised questions about the certification requirement for current ENERGY STAR qualified products. According to a statement issued by the EPA, products that were ENERGY STAR qualified prior to the Jan. 1 implementation date will be permitted to bear the ENERGY STAR mark and will not be subject to verification until new specifications are in place.
The EPA is preparing to implement new specifications for these related product categories by 2012. When those specifications are validated, only products that have been qualified through a certification body to the new specifications will be allowed to bear the ENERGY STAR mark. These products must also be part of the certification body's verification program for continued compliance.
Click here for EPA's latest revisions to various specifications.