EU refines approach to ecodesign
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Solar panels are among the products targeted by the European Commission as it revises EU ecodesign standards.
Setting out the commission’s approach, first vice-president Frans Timmermans said the working plan for products to be included for possible future ecodesign measures had focused on those with the most savings potential.
‘We recommend six new [products], like hand dryers, lifts, electric kettles and solar panels, where evidence shows that you can get the highest yield,’ he said. ‘That is very important. Products with the biggest yield in energy savings are already on the list and are already subject to ecodesign but now we need to go into the next phase and select further products that would have a good impact in terms of energy saving.’
Timmermans also confirmed that the commission would review of existing ecodesign standards to ensure they keep up with technological progress.
Implementing regulations already cover 23 product groups, from air conditioners and comfort fans to water pumps, under the recast Ecodesign Directive (2009/15/EC). According to the commission, these measures will save the equivalent of the annual primary energy consumption of Italy by 2020. The new proposals will add to these savings, benefiting consumers by €490 a year and generating annual revenues of €55bn for industry.
The commission added that the policies would help to deliver nearly half of the EU’s energy savings targets by 2020 as well as one-quarter of the bloc’s emissions reduction targets.
Timmermans said the package-based approach to ecodesign proposed by the commission linked with its circular economy action plan by enlarging the scope and giving more attention than in the past to wider resource efficiency aspects, and not just focus on energy and water.
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