PRESS RELEASE – Brussels, 3 November 2009
Energy efficiency labelling: Greenwash for white goods: Swedish Presidency backs A++++ grades
Trialogue discussions on energy efficiency labelling took place today between the EU Council, EU Commission and EU Parliament. The Swedish Presidency has controversially backed a proposal supported by a minority of member states, which would allow the introduction of new classifications up to “A++++” for domestic appliances such as washing machines and refrigerators.
Finnish Green MEP Satu Hassi – EP environment committee member and Greens/EFA shadow on energy efficiency labelling – commented:
“The white goods industry is trying to turn a valuable consumer information tool into a cynical PR exercise. The introduction of A+ and A++ grades has already compromised the A-G energy efficiency scale. This new proposal promotes total greenwash for white goods, allowing the creation of grades up to a ridiculous “A++++” and possibly beyond in future.
Virtually every new product on the market would be labelled with some form of A grade, making a mockery of the system. This would be as ridiculous as giving a gold medal to every athlete at the Olympics.
By bowing to the demands of the white goods industry and the minority of Member States that stand behind them, the Swedish Presidency is flying in the face of its own goal of an eco-efficient EU economy. (1)
Energy efficiency labelling is a bright idea to empower consumers to choose domestic appliances that will be good for both the planet and their pockets. We must regularly review existing energy efficiency grades – not add to the top of the scale – to drive industry innovation and to maintain meaningful guidance for consumers.”
Notes to editors:
(1) From the programme of the Swedish Presidency of the EU