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The Hon Dr Sharman Stone
Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for the Environment and Heritage
Federal Member for Murray
9 June 2004
Improving energy efficiency in household and industrial appliances is one of the most cost-effective ways to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, an international air-conditioning conference was told today.
While opening the international Air Conditioning and Energy Performance - the next five years conference in Sydney, Dr Sharman Stone, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for the Environment and Heritage, said that projections over a 20-year period indicate that the consumer appliance and equipment energy efficiency program alone would result in over $4 billion in community energy savings by 2020.
"With $27.4 million for the Action on Energy Efficiency Program announced in the 2004 Budget, the Australian Government is leading action to save energy and reduce greenhouse gas emissions from electrical and gas appliances," Dr Stone said.
"Effective action on energy efficiency will play a key part in Australia achieving its internationally agreed emissions target."
Dr Stone commended the Australian air conditioning industry for bringing forward the implementation of more stringent energy efficiency regulations for air conditioners - originally due in October 2007 - to April 2006.
"Not only will this action help to improve the quality of products in the Australian market, but reduced energy use is good for the economy and consumers, as well as delivering a better greenhouse outcome for Australia," Dr Stone said.
For Australian consumers, the most recognisable sign of the Australian Government's energy efficient action is the well-known Energy Rating Label on fridges and dishwashers, together with the Top Energy Saver Award awarded to products that are the best in their class in terms of energy efficiency and cost savings.
"Australia's labelling system is complemented by mandatory minimum energy performance standards that ensure Australian consumers cannot purchase poorly performing appliances that waste energy and have high operating costs," Dr Stone said.
Dr Stone noted that the conference will help set the agenda for energy efficiency in air-conditioners, identify ways of delivering electricity peak load reductions, and assist in establishing a more stringent regulatory blueprint for the future.
The conference, organised by the Australian Greenhouse Office, is supported by the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation ( APEC ), together with the three Australian-based airconditioning associations: the Australian Institute of Refrigeration, Air Conditioning and Heating; the Air Conditioning Refrigeration Equipment Manufacturers Association; and the Energy Supply Association of Australia.