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Minister for the Environment, Water, Heritage and the Arts 2001-2004

The Hon Dr David Kemp, MP

 

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Media Release
Minister for the Environment and Heritage
Dr David Kemp

15 March 2004

Top Energy Saver Award is a winner


The Top Energy Saver Award Winner label will make it easy for Australians to identify the most energy efficient electric or gas appliances on the market.

Launched in Melbourne today by Australian Minister for the Environment and Heritage, Dr David Kemp, the label will indicate that a product is the best in its class in terms of energy efficiency and cost savings.

“The new label will complement the existing star rating energy label by identifying those products that deliver the greatest energy savings and environmental benefits compared to other similar products on the market,” Dr Kemp said.

“The aim is to give consumers the opportunity to make better choices. This new label takes advantage of the high consumer recognition of the existing star rating system on electric and gas appliances, but goes further by explicitly rewarding the most efficient product within household appliance categories.”

Energy efficiency star rating systems now apply to electric refrigerators, freezers, dishwashers, washing machines, clothes dryers and air-conditioners, and to gas cookers, water heaters and space heaters.

“The new label, combined with the existing star rating label, is designed to build on the Australian Government's successful introduction of minimum energy performance standards for appliances and equipment. These minimum standards ensure that poor performing products cannot be sold. The labels go beyond this minimum requirement by encouraging consumers to choose the most efficient appliances for their needs,” Dr Kemp said.

“Important features of this new label are that it will clearly indicate the year it was awarded, and the 'best-in-class' standard will be revised at the beginning of each year. This will ensure that manufacturers with innovative products will have a marketing benefit for the year ahead and consumers can be assured that the award label is up-to-date.”

Dr Kemp congratulated the electrical and gas industry and appliance manufacturers for continuing to work cooperatively with the Australian and State Governments to improve the energy efficiency of appliances in Australia.

The new label will start to appear on electrical appliances in March 2004, and on gas products soon after. More information on TESAW is available on the energy rating website: http://www.energyrating.gov.au/tesaw-main.html


Backgrounder - Top Energy Saver Award Winner scheme

About TESAW

Top Energy Saver Award Winner (TESAW) is a new award system that Australian and State governments and the appliance industry have created to recognise the most energy efficient (best in class) star rated products on the market. It applies to both electric and gas products that carry a star rating energy label. It is an award system that helps consumers quickly identify the most efficient products on the market.

Consumers readily recognise the existing star rating energy label which has been placed on electrical products since 1992 (see example on www.energyrating.gov.au/tesaw-main.html). A very similar label using different colours is used by the Australian Gas Association for gas appliances.

The new TESAW label is an endorsement label - see example on www.energyrating.gov.au/tesaw-main.html - it is complementary to the mandatory comparative star rating label. If you find a product that carries a TESAW label for the current year, you can be sure that it is one of the most efficient models on the market. There are separate TESAW labels for electric and gas appliances.

The TESAW label is about half the size of a normal electric energy label and is in the same colours. This label will sit adjacent to the normal electric energy label. Gas appliances will have a special gas Top Energy Award Saver Award label.

Mandatory star rating labels, which are a measure of product energy efficiency, are a good way of comparing the energy efficiency of products. With a list of all the products on the market, and using a star rating, it is an easy task to pick the most energy efficient. However, consumers are not always able to shop around. In these cases, the TESAW label can quickly show that a chosen product is one of the most efficient in its class on the market.

How TESAW will be awarded

Each year, the energy efficiency of all products on the market will be reviewed. In consultation with industry, the Government will set energy efficiency criteria (usually the best star rating available) for TESAW awards for the coming year (each label specifies the year of the Award). From the start of the award period (November), manufacturers of existing products or new products that meet the set energy efficiency criteria will be eligible to apply for an award. Once an award is granted, the manufacturer is eligible to display the TESAW label on their products in retail stores.

TESAW and consumers

Appliances with an Award for 2004 will be listed and separately identified in the normal appliance listings on the AGO website www.energyrating.gov.au . If the product is an award winner, this will be clearly shown in the product lists on this site.

All product types have examples that qualify for the TESAW Award. Consumers should start to see the TESAW image on electrical appliances in March 2004 with gas products following shortly thereafter.

TESAW and the Australian Government's labelling strategy

The Australian Government has long supported information that informs markets, allowing consumers to make their own decisions. Since 1992, the Australian Government has supported the mandatory star-rating label for major electrical appliances. In late 2003, Minister Kemp announced plans for a mandatory label for water-using appliances based on the electrical star rating.

In 2004, the Ministerial Council on Energy will consider mandating the gas appliance labelling scheme, currently operated as a voluntary measure by the Australian Gas Association.

TESAW complements this expansion of mandatory labelling with an endorsement label. It will become the image used on electric and gas appliances that identifies the best-in-class products, the notional top 10%. The international endorsement label, Energy Star, fills a similar niche for home entertainment and office products sold in Australia identifying the most efficient products.

Commonwealth of Australia