Don’t Change System of Measuring Energy Efficiency in Household Products

Energy_Star (1)

Target: United States EPA Acting Administrator Bob Perciasepe

Goal: To prevent the proposed redefining of what qualifies items for energy star status.

Created in 1992, the term Energy Star (trademarked as the fully capitalized ENERGY STAR) has become a well respected international standard for measuring energy efficiency in consumer products. This term was created by the Environmental Protection Agency and the Department of Energy to allow for a universally accepted means with which to verify product claims about energy efficiency. At present, devices that carry the Energy Star service mark generally use 20%-30% less energy than is required by federal standards.

This program has thus far saved an estimated $230 billion in energy costs as well as over 1.7 billion metric tons of greenhouses gases. Despite some controversy in 2006 regarding flexible and misleading labels, the program has been exceedingly successful in allowing consumers to make energy-conscious purchasing decisions. The program has been so successful that is has been adopted by several other nations including Australia, Canada, Japan, New Zealand, Taiwon, and the European Union.­­

It is because of this success that a change being considered in Washington right now is so baffling. A new proposal would adjust the requirements for Energy Star windows, doors, and skylights to a point at which only the most expensive of these products would qualify. This runs contrary to the entire premise of the Energy Star program, which was intended to allow the average consumer the capacity to make an informed energy-conscious decision.

If the Washington proposal were to pass then only the wealthiest would benefit from the information Energy Star provides. Middle-income consumers would be left to fend for themselves in terms of energy-efficient options. This would result in harm to both the consumer and the environment. This must not be allowed to happen. Energy Star requirements must remain as they are so as to preserve the program’s effectiveness for all consumers, not only the most wealthy.

PETITION LETTER:

Dear Administrator Perciasepe,

The term Energy Star was created in 1992 and has in the ensuing years become a well respected international standard for measuring the energy efficiency of consumer products. The term itself was a joint creation of both the Environmental Protection Agency and Department of Energy with the purpose of creating a universally accepted means with which to verify product claims about energy efficiency. At the moment any devices that carry the Energy Star service mark can be trusted to use at least 20%-30% less energy than is required by federal standards.

To date, this program has saved over $230 billion in energy costs in addition to over 1.7 billion metric tons of greenhouse gases. The only minor blemish this program suffered, regarding flexible and misleading labels, was resolved shortly after coming to light in 2006. The program has otherwise been exceedingly successful as it has allowed consumers of all types to make energy-conscious purchasing decisions.  The program’s success has even allowed it to expand into several other nations such as Australia, Canada, Japan, New Zealand, Taiwon, and much of the European Union.

With the success this program has had it is shocking that a decision to change the program for the worse is being considered. This change, as proposed, would adjust requirements for Energy Star windows, doors, and skylights to a point at which only the most expensive of these products would qualify. This plan would run entirely contrary to the premise of the Energy Star program, which is intended to allow the average consumer the capacity to make an informed and energy-conscious decision.

Washington cannot allow this change to the program, as only the wealthiest would then be able to benefit from the information Energy Star provides. Middle income consumers would be left to fend for themselves in terms of judging energy efficient options. This harmful act would impact both the consumer and the environment and therefore cannot be allowed to happen.

Sincerely,

[Your Name Here]

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