The ENERGY STAR service mark is awarded to certified energy efficient products, homes, commercial buildings, and industrial plants.
|Founded||March 15, 1992|
|Founder||John S. Hoffman. U.S. EPA|
|United States, European Union as well as Canada, Iceland, Japan, Liechtenstein, Norway, Switzerland, and Taiwan|
Energy Star (trademarked ENERGY STAR) is a voluntary program launched by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and now managed by the EPA and U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) that helps businesses and individuals save money and protect the environment through superior energy efficiency. Energy Star provides simple, credible, and unbiased information that consumers and businesses rely on to make well-informed decisions to save money and reduce emissions. A widely recognized symbol for energy efficiency the Energy Star label can be found on more than 75 different product categories, new homes, commercial buildings and industrial plants. Thousands of industrial, manufacturing, retailer, commercial, construction, home improvement, utility, state, and local organizations—including more than 40 percent of the Fortune 500—rely on their partnership with Energy Star to deliver cost-saving energy efficiency solutions.
Elements of the Energy Star Program have been adopted by the European Union as well as Canada, Iceland, Japan, Liechtenstein, Norway, Switzerland, and Taiwan. In the United States, the Energy Star label is also shown on the Energy Guide appliance label of qualifying products.
- 1 History
- 2 Specifications
- 3 Energy performance ratings
- 4 Small business award
- 5 Controversies
- 6 Adoption in building codes
- 7 See also
- 8 References
- 9 External links
The Energy Star program was established by EPA in 1992 and operates under the authority of the Clean Air Act, section 103(g), and the 2005 Energy Policy Act, section 131 (which amended the Energy Policy and Conservation Act, section 324). Since 1992, Energy Star and its partners have helped save American families and businesses $430 billion on their energy bills—while also achieving broad emissions reductions—all through voluntary action.
EPA manages the ENERGY STAR Products, New Homes, Commercial, and Industrial programs. EPA developed and manages ENERGY STAR Portfolio Manager, an online energy tracking and benchmarking tool for commercial buildings. EPA manages IT systems that share product data in real time with thousands of retailers, manufacturers, and utilities. DOE manages Home Performance with ENERGY STAR and provides technical support, including test procedure development for products and some verification testing of products.
Initiated as a voluntary labeling program designed to identify and promote energy efficient products, Energy Star began with labels for computer and printer products. In 1995 the program was significantly expanded, introducing labels for residential heating and cooling systems and new homes. In 2000, the Consortium for Energy Efficiency was directed by members to begin an annual survey of Energy Star impact.
According to the U.S. Energy and Employment Report for 2016, 290,000 American workers are involved in the manufacture of ENERGY STAR certified products and building materials. The report also projects that employment in energy efficiency will grow much faster than other areas of the energy sector—9 percent in 2017 vs. average projected growth of 5 percent across all of the energy sector—and ENERGY STAR is an integral part of that market.
Energy Star specifications differ with each item, and are set by the EPA. The following highlights product and specification information available on the Energy Star website.
Energy Star 4.0 specifications for computers became effective on July 20, 2007. The requirements are more stringent than the previous specification and existing equipment designs can no longer use the service mark unless re-qualified. They require the use of 80 Plus Bronze level or higher power supplies. Energy Star 5.0 became effective on July 1, 2009. Energy Star 6.1 became effective on September 10, 2014. 
The EPA released Version 1.0 of the Computer Server specifications on May 15, 2009. It covered standalone servers with one to four processor sockets. A second tier to the specification adding active state power and performance reporting for all qualified servers, as well as blade and multi-node server idle state requirements became effective December 16, 2013.
As of early 2008, average refrigerators need 20% savings over the minimum standard. Dishwashers need at least 41% savings. Most appliances as well as heating and cooling systems have a yellow EnergyGuide label showing the annual cost of operation compared to other models. This label is created through the Federal Trade Commission and often shows if an appliance is Energy Star rated. While an Energy Star label indicates that the appliance is more energy efficient than the minimum guidelines, purchasing an Energy Star labeled product does not always mean one is getting the most energy efficient option available. For example, dehumidifiers that are rated under 25 US pints (12 L) per day of water extraction receive an Energy Star rating if they have an energy factor of 1.2 (higher is better), while those rated 25 US pints (12 L) to 35 US pints (17 L) per day receive an Energy Star rating for an energy factor of 1.4 or higher. Thus a higher-capacity but non-Energy Star rated dehumidifier may be a more energy efficient alternative than an Energy Star rated but lower-capacity model. The Energy Star program's savings calculator has also been criticized for unrealistic assumptions in its model that tend to magnify savings benefits to the average consumer.
Another factor yet to be considered by the EPA and DOE is the overall effect of energy-saving requirements on the durability and expected service life of a mass-market appliance built to a consumer-level cost standard. For example, a refrigerator may be made more efficient by the use of more insulative spacing and a smaller-capacity compressor using electronics to control operation and temperature. However, this may come at the cost of reduced interior storage (or increased exterior mass) or a reduced service life due to compressor or electronic failures. In particular, electronic controls used on new-generation appliances are subject to damage from shock, vibration, moisture, or power spikes on the electrical circuit to which they are attached. Critics have pointed out that even if a new appliance is energy efficient, any consumer appliance that does not provide customer satisfaction, or must be replaced twice as often as its predecessor contributes to landfill pollution and waste of natural resources used to construct its replacement.
Heating and cooling systems
Energy Star qualified heat pumps, boilers, air conditioning systems, and furnaces are available. In addition, cooling and heating bills can be significantly lowered with air sealing and duct sealing. Air sealing reduces the outdoor air that penetrates a building, and duct sealing prevents attic or basement air from entering ducts and lessening the heating/cooling system’s efficiency. Energy Star qualified room air conditioners are at least 10% more energy efficient than the minimum U.S. federal government standards.
Energy Star qualified televisions use 30% less energy than average. In November 2008, television specifications were improved to limit on-mode power use, in addition to standby power which is limited by the current specifications. A wider range of Energy Star qualified televisions will be available. Other qualified home electronics include cordless phones, battery chargers, VCRs and external power adapters, most of which use 90% less energy.
The Energy Star Program Requirements for Imaging Products are focused on product families such as electrophotographic (EP) printers, inkjet printers (e.g., thermal), copiers, facsimile machines and other imaging equipment including MFD's (multifunctional devices). Typical Electrical Consumption (TEC) of a product family are measured and reported against an allowance set by the maximum throughput of the device. Operation modes (OM) are measured and reported for devices such as inkjet products against an allowance set by the functions present in the EUT (equipment under test). Devices that included "adders" such as Ethernet, on-board memory, wireless, etc. are mathematically "added" to increase the OM allowance. Recently on February 1, 2011, the EPA/DOE added the requirement that all products registered under the Energy Star service mark, must be tested by an AB (Accredited Body) or CB (Certification Body) Laboratory.
The Energy Star is awarded to only certain bulbs that meet strict efficiency, quality, and lifetime criteria.
Energy Star Qualified light-emitting diode (LED) Lighting:
- Reduces energy costs — uses at least 75% less energy than incandescent lighting, saving on operating expenses.
- Reduces maintenance costs — lasts 35 to 50 times longer than incandescent lighting and about 2 to 5 times longer than fluorescent lighting. No bulb-replacements, no ladders, no ongoing disposal program.
- Reduces cooling costs — LEDs produce very little heat.
To qualify for Energy Star certification, LED lighting products must pass a variety of tests to prove that the products will display the following characteristics:
- Brightness is equal to or greater than existing lighting technologies (incandescent or fluorescent) and light is well distributed over the area lighted by the fixture.
- Light output remains constant over time, only decreasing towards the end of the rated lifetime (at least 35,000 hours or 12 years based on use of 8 hours per day).
- Excellent color quality. The shade of white light appears clear and consistent over time.
- Efficiency is as good as or better than fluorescent lighting.
- Light comes on instantly when turned on.
- No flicker when dimmed.
- No off-state power draw. The fixture does not use power when it is turned off, with the exception of external controls, whose power should not exceed 0.5 watts in the off state.
New homes that meet strict guidelines for energy efficiency can qualify for Energy Star certification. Homes built to the ENERGY STAR Program Requirements are designed to be 15% more energy-efficient than homes built to code. The National Program Requirements are benchmarked against the 2009 International Energy Conservation Code (IECC). In states that adopt the 2012 IECC, the program is benchmarked to be 15% more efficient than the 2012 IECC. They usually include properly installed insulation, high performance windows, tight construction and ducts, energy efficient cooling and heating systems, and Energy Star qualified appliances, lighting, and water heaters.
Energy performance ratings
The U.S. EPA's Energy Star program has developed energy performance rating systems for several commercial and institutional building types and manufacturing facilities. These ratings, on a scale of 1 to 100, provide a means for benchmarking the energy efficiency of specific buildings and industrial plants against the energy performance of similar facilities. The ratings are used by building and energy managers to evaluate the energy performance of existing buildings and industrial plants. The rating systems are also used by EPA to determine if a building or plant can qualify to earn Energy Star recognition.
For many types of commercial buildings, one can enter energy information into EPA's free online tool, Portfolio Manager, and it will calculate a score for one's building on a scale of 1-100. Buildings that score a 75 or greater may qualify for the Energy Star. Portfolio Manager is an interactive energy management tool that allows one to track and assess energy and water consumption across one's entire portfolio of buildings in a secure online environment. Whether one owns, manages, or holds properties for investment, Portfolio Manager can help one set investment priorities, identify under-performing buildings, verify efficiency improvements, and receive EPA recognition for superior energy performance. Portfolio Manager uses an automated benchmarking tool that can award Energy Star certification to buildings that have uploaded 12 months of consecutive energy usage data and received scores of 75 or above.
The number of space types that can receive the energy performance rating in Portfolio Manager is expanding and now includes housing, bank/financial institutions, courthouses, hospitals (acute care and children's), hotels and motels, houses of worship, K-12 schools, medical offices, offices, residence halls/dormitories, retail stores, supermarkets, warehouses (refrigerated and non-refrigerated), data centers, senior care facilities, and wastewater facilities.
See the technical descriptions for models used in the rating system at. These documents provide detailed information on the methodologies used to create the energy performance ratings including details on rating objectives, regression techniques, and the steps applied to compute a rating. A 1-100 rating can be generated for ratable space types by entering building attributes, such as square footage and weekly operating hours, and monthly energy consumption data into Portfolio Manager, a free online tool provided by Energy Star. This process is known as benchmarking and reveals how a building's energy consumption compares to that of other similar buildings of the same space type, based on a national average. Earning a rating of 75 or above is the first step towards achieving the Energy Star for a building.
Energy Star energy performance ratings have been incorporated into some green buildings standards, such as LEED for Existing Buildings.
Energy performance ratings have been released for the following industrial facilities:
Automobile assembly plants, cement plants, wet corn mills, container glass manufacturing, flat glass manufacturing, frozen fried potato processing plants, juice processing, petroleum refineries, and pharmaceutical manufacturing plants.
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Small business award
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) annually recognizes small businesses that demonstrate abilities to reduce waste, conserve energy, and recycle. The businesses use resources and ideas outlined in the Energy Star program. The award was established in 1999.
In March 2010, the Government Accountability Office (GAO) performed covert testing of the ENERGY STAR product certification process and found that ENERGY STAR was for the most part a self-certification program that was vulnerable to fraud and abuse. While the GAO demonstrated, by submitting fake products from made-up companies, that cheating was possible, they found no evidence of consumer fraud relating to the quality or performance of ENERGY STAR qualified products.
In response, the Environmental Protection Agency instituted third-party certification of all ENERGY STAR products starting in 2011. Under this regime, products are tested in an EPA-recognized laboratory and reviewed by an EPA-recognized certification body before they can carry the label. In order to be recognized, labs and certification bodies must meet specified criteria and be subject to oversight by a recognized accreditation body. In addition, a percentage of ENERGY STAR certified product models in each category are subject to off-the-shelf verification testing each year.
Senator Susan M. Collins (ME), who at the time was Ranking Member of the Senate Homeland Security and Government Affairs Committee and had requested the GAO audit, applauded the changes that were made to further protect the credibility and integrity of the ENERGY STAR Program.
As of 2017, there are 23 independent certification bodies and 255 independent laboratories recognized for purposes of ENERGY STAR product certification and testing. Most cover multiple product types. In 2016, 1,881 product models were subject to verification testing with an overall compliance rate of 95%.
In March 2017 the Trump Administration proposed a budget that would eliminate the program. This prompted an outpouring of expressions of support for the ENERGY STAR program from environmental groups, energy efficiency advocates, businesses and others, including coverage of the "potentially lethal implications of eliminating the program" on Full Frontal with Samantha Bee.
Adoption in building codes
The current and projected status of energy codes and standards adoption is show in the maps at the link.
The following cities have mandatory reporting requirements.
- Atlanta, GA
- Austin, TX
- Boston, MA
- Minneapolis, MN
- New York, NY
- Philadelphia, PA
- San Francisco, CA
- Seattle, WA
- Washington, DC
- ASUE (Germany)
- Bureau of Energy Efficiency India
- European Union energy label
- Green computing
- Green energy
- House Energy Rating (Australia)
- Miscellaneous electric load
- One Watt Initiative
- Plug load
- Power management
- "Guidelines for Energy Service and Product Providers". Retrieved 27 March 2012.
- "EPA Celebrates 20th Anniversary of ENERGY STAR - ENERGY STAR". EnergyStar.gov. 2012-03-15. Retrieved 2016-05-10.
- New York Times. "John Hoffman, a Force in Energy Efficiency, Dies at 62".
- "Energy Star Overview". www.energystar.gov. Retrieved 2017-10-25.
- Consortium for Energy Efficiency. "National Awareness of Energy Star for 2016" (PDF).
- U.S. EPA. "Energy Star international partners".
- U.S. General Publishing Office. "Section 103(g) of the Clean Air Act" (PDF).
- U.S. General Publishing Office. "Energy Policy Act. Section 131" (PDF).
- U.S. EPA. "EPA's Statutory Authority for Energy Star".
- U.S. EPA. "Energy Star By the Numbers".
- U.S. EPA. "EPA-DOE Memorandum of Understanding (MOU)".
- EnergyStar.gov, “Milestones: Energy Star.” 2007. Retrieved on 1 March 2008.
- "National Awareness of Energy Star". Consortium for Energy Efficiency and US EPA. US EPA. Retrieved 2016-07-07.
- "2017 U.S. Energy and Employment Report | Department of Energy". energy.gov. Retrieved 2017-11-14.
- Computers with any Energy Star version installed will display its logo, or a rosette and the company's slogan when running the BIOS after turning the machine on. Ng, Jansen (1 July 2009). "New Energy Star 5.0 Specs for Computers Become Effective Today". DailyTech. Retrieved 2009-07-01.
- "Version 6.1 Energy Efficiency Requirements for Computers". Retrieved November 30, 2016.
- EnergyStar.gov, "Energy Star - Enterprise Servers". Retrieved 30 November 2016.
- EnergyStar.gov, "Learn More about EnergyGuide: Energy Star.". Retrieved 1 March 2008.
- Green Energy Efficient Homes, Energy Efficient Dehumidifiers
- Belzer, Richard Energy Star Appliances: EPA's Savings Calculator Exaggerates Savings, Regulatory Economics, 5 March 2008
- Muñoz, Sara Schaeffer, Do 'Green' Appliances Live Up To Their Billing, The Wall Street Journal, Business, 2 August 2007
- "EnergyStar.gov, "Room Air Conditioners Key Product Criteria" Retrieved 2008-07-17". Energystar.gov. Retrieved 2009-03-23.
- California Sustainability Alliance Energy Star Televisions, Received July 24th, 2010
- "Energy Star Qualified Homes : Energy Star". Energystar.gov. 2009-01-27. Retrieved 2009-03-23.
- Energy Star - Evaluate Performance Energy Star.gov
- Energy Star Benchmark Energy Star.gov
- "Portfolio Manager". Energy Star. Retrieved 2012-12-29.
- "Portfolio Manager Overview : ENERGY STAR". Energystar.gov. 2011-12-23. Retrieved 2012-12-29.
- U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, "2006 Annual Report: Energy Star and Other Climate Protection Partnerships.". Retrieved 1 March 2008.
- "Criteria for Rating Building Energy Performance". Energystar.gov. Retrieved 2009-03-23.
- "The ENERGY STAR for Buildings & Manufacturing Plants : ENERGY STAR". Energystar.gov. Retrieved 2012-12-29.
- "Portfolio Manager Overview: Technical Descriptions for Models Used in the Rating System : ENERGY STAR". Energystar.gov. Retrieved 2012-12-29.
- "Industries in Focus : Energy Star". Energystar.gov. 2009-03-16. Retrieved 2009-03-23.
- "Small Businesses and Congregations Improve Energy Efficiency and Fight Climate Change / EPA names nine Energy Star small business and congregation award winners". EPA.gov. 2010-09-21.
- U.S. Government Accountability Office (March 2010). "ENERGY STAR PROGRAM Covert Testing Shows the Energy Star Program Certification Process is Vulnerable to Fraud and Abuse". GAO-10-470.
- https://www.energystar.gov/index.cfm?c=third_party_certification.tpc_index. Retrieved October 12, 2017. Missing or empty
- United States Senate Committee on Homeland Secruity and Governemental Affairs (April 14, 2010). "Senator Collins Lauds Changes to Energy Star Program; Notes Quick Response by EPA, DOE to Recent Investigation". (Press Release).
- https://www.energystar.gov/index.cfm?fuseaction=recognized_bodies_list.show_RCB_search_form. Retrieved October 12, 2017. Missing or empty
- (PDF) https://www.energystar.gov/ia/partners/downloads/2016%20Verification%20Testing%20Summary.pdf?59c2-99b5. Retrieved October 16, 2017. Missing or empty
- "Trump Budget Plan Would Slice EPA Spending by Nearly a Third". Bloomberg.com. 2017-03-16. Retrieved 2017-04-24.
- Wolf, Alan (March 28, 2017). "Trump May Pull the Plug on Energy Star Program".
- Callahan, Katari (April 5, 2017). "The cheap, effective program that Trump wants to kill".
- Heikkinen, Niina (April 5, 2017). "Private sector on quest to save Energy Star". E&E News.
- Daly, Matthew (April 25, 2017). "Companies decry Trump plan to eliminate Energy Star Program". The Associated Press.
- Bradley, Laura (March 23, 2017). "Samantha Bee Cackles Over Trump's Failing Budget Proposal".
- http://www.energycodes.gov/adoption/states |title= Building Energy Codes Program
- http://www.austinenergy.com/about%20us/environmental%20initiatives/ordinance/ordinance.pdf |title= Austin, TX Benchmarking Ordinance
- http://www.austinenergy.com/about%20us/environmental%20initiatives/ordinance/commercial.htm Austin, TX Benchmarking Ordinance
- http://www.energymanagertoday.com/boston-mandates-energy-benchmarking-091702/ Boston Mandates Energy Benchmarking
- http://www.minneapolismn.gov/environment/WCMS1P-102244 Minneapolis, MN Benchmarking FAQs
- http://www.nyc.gov/html/planyc2030/downloads/pdf/benchmarking_summary_for_website.pdf New York, NY Benchmarking Summary Website
- http://www.nyc.gov/html/gbee/html/plan/ll84.shtml New York, NY Benchmarking Plan
- http://legislation.phila.gov/attachments/13491.pdf Philadelphia, PA Benchmarking
- http://blog.cleantechies.com/2011/02/09/san-franciscos-energy-benchmark-requirements-detailed/ San Francisco, CA Benchmarking
- http://clerk.ci.seattle.wa.us/~scripts/nph-brs.exe?s1=&s3=116731&s4=&s2=&s5=&Sect4=AND&l=20&Sect2=THESON&Sect3=PLURON&Sect5=CBORY&Sect6=HITOFF&d=ORDF&p=1&u=%2F~public%2Fcbory.htm&r=1&f=G Seattle, WA Benchmarking
- http://green.dc.gov/page/private-building-benchmarking Washington, D.C. Benchmarking
- Energy Star
- Energy Star Australia
- Energy Star Canada
- Energy Consumption Calculator
- Energy Star entry at Ecolabelling.org
- Energy Efficiency Breakdown of the costs, savings, and energy efficiency of Energy Star appliances
- Energy Star qualified Energy Service & Product Providers list
- EPA recognized Certification Bodies (CBs) and Laboratories
- Energy Star 5.0 Computer specification (November 14, 2008)
- 10 CFR 430, Subpart B, Appendix A to Subpart B of Part 430 - Uniform Test Method for Measuring the Energy Consumption of Electric Refrigerators and Electric Refrigerator-Freezers