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E&C Committee Holds Legislative Hearing on Latta-authored Draft to Modernize Energy Star Program

Washington, November 7, 2017 | Drew Griffin (202-225-6405)
Tags: Energy
A discussion draft authored by Congressman Bob Latta (R-Bowling Green) to modernize the Energy Star program was one of the main focuses of an Energy and Commerce (E&C) subcommittee hearing this morning. The E&C Subcommittee on Energy hearing examined the effects of that draft legislation, the Energy Star Reform Act, along with one other energy bill. The Energy Star Reform Act incorporates previous legislation by Latta that would protect consumers and strengthen the program, and the draft would also lead to a more open and transparent process for setting standards.

Latta said at the hearing, “The Energy Star program has been a win-win for consumers and manufacturers over the past twenty-five years. This program has proven to be a successful tool in advancing the development and use of energy efficient technologies. It has also promoted economic expansion and job growth for participating manufacturers across the nation, including many in my home state of Ohio.”

He continued, “The Energy Star program is widely recognized by consumers and has seen major investments by the manufacturing community over the past two decades. The updates we are considering today are important for ensuring that this program remains strong.”

Video of Latta’s statement is available here.

The Energy Star program, which was created in 1992, is a voluntary program run by the Environmental Protection Agency and the Department of Energy. The program allows manufacturers to obtain ENERGY STAR labeling for products if specific energy saving guidelines are met, benefitting consumers that are looking to purchase energy efficient products.

The Energy Star Reform Act specifically:
Makes the Department of Energy the permanent lead agency of the Energy Star program. The Obama Administration had changed responsibility to the Environmental Protectin Agency in 2009, despite DOE having the requisite expertise.
Subjects the program to the requirements of the Administrative Procedure Act, ensuring actions taken by Energy Star are the same as other agency rulemaking.
Allows makers of electronic products that are in good standing with the program to self-certify.
Creates liability protections for program participants that are found to be out of compliance, ensuring that after being subject to all corrective measures and penalties, they are not further subject to litigation related to noncompliance.
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