Power Electronics

Energy Department Issues Advance Notices of Proposed Rulemaking

Secretary of Energy Spencer Abraham has announced the upcoming publication of Advance Notices of Proposed Rulemaking regarding energy efficiency standards for three products: distribution transformers, commercial air conditioners and heat pumps, and residential furnaces and boilers. Each of these products will be the subject of an upcoming public meeting at which the Department of Energy (DOE) will summarize its analysis and seek public comment.

The public meetings are scheduled for Sept. 28, 2004, for distribution transformers; Sept. 29, 2004, for residential furnaces and boilers; and Sept. 30, 2004, for commercial air conditioners and heat pumps. The purpose of the public meetings is to present DOE’s analysis methods and to characterize the results to date; to discuss specific issues related to each rulemaking; to seek input from attendees on methodologies, assumptions and data sources; and to describe upcoming analyses and next steps.

Energy efficiency standards are part of DOE’s Appliance and Commercial Equipment Standards Program, established in accordance with the requirements of the Energy Policy and Conservation Act of 1975. To date, energy efficiency standards have saved 7.9 quadrillion Btus (quads) of energy and have saved the nation $31.3 billion in reduced energy bills. Furthermore, existing energy efficiency standards are projected to save another 73.7 quads and $147.4 billion between now and 2030. The three products of this announcement currently use a total of 6.9 quads of energy per year: distribution transformers use 1.6 quads, commercial air conditioners and heat pumps use 0.7 quads, and residential furnaces and boilers use 4.6 quads.

Three announcements in yesterday’s Federal Register are each accompanied by the posting of the Technical Support Document as well as various analytical tools on DOE’s Web sites for the three products.

For more information, visit the sites for each product:

Distribution Transformers

Commercial Air Conditioners and Heat Pumps

Residential Furnaces and Boilers

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