European Union to Ban Goods that aren't Energy Efficient


Photo via DELERI

In a move that could ban the sale products that aren't energy efficient, the EU has agreed to set environmental standards on "energy-related" household goods. Stuff like showerheads and windows will now need to meet an energy efficiency standard in order to be sold or imported to Europe, according to Bloomberg. In other words, soon citizens will have no choice but to buy certain energy efficient products. The initiative is a bid to reduce energy consumption across European countries—and it could help improve energy efficiency 20% by 2020. An environmental standard was already set by the EU back in 2005, but it only covered the direct effects of power consumption items had: (from Bloomberg)

The European Parliament approved a draft law expanding 2005 legislation on the ecological design of energy-using products to cover goods that have an indirect effect on power consumption. Water-using items such as taps are covered because hot water requires energy.

The original legislation included electronic devices and heating and electrical equipment—the definition has now been expanded to cover all "energy-related" goods. Hence the windows and showerheads: it's quite an expansion. And products that don't make the cut? They're banned from sale in any EU country.
And what would surely rouse cries of "socialism" in the US is being embraced in the EU:
This will "provide consumers with more efficient, more reliable and longer-lasting products," said Magor Imre Csibi, a Romanian member who steered the measure through the 27-nation EU assembly today in Strasbourg, France. Governments have already signaled their support under a fast-track accord with the Parliament, making their final approval a formality in the coming weeks.

So what do you think: A bold move to reduce energy consumption on a large scale? A win-win situation to provide European consumers with energy efficient goods while saving power? Or an infringement on buyer's rights?

More on EU Energy Efficiency
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EU Mayors Sign Covenant of Mayors Climate Initiative

Tags: Economics | Electricity | Energy Efficiency