For the past few decades, the Ecodesign rules and Energy labelling have contributed to reducing the energy consumption and increasing the overall sustainability of household appliances, improving their energy and resource efficiency, and helping consumers to save money and make more sustainable choices. For these reasons, the European Commission has identified these regulations as important tools to achieve the EU climate and sustainability commitments under the EU Green Deal and the Circular Economy Action Plan. The recent geopolitical events and the ongoing energy and cost-of-living crisis have seen energy prices skyrocket and households’ energy bills soar, leading to an increased interest in energy efficiency and savings. Policymakers across and beyond Europe were prompted to take steps to accelerate the transition to more efficient and more climate-friendly solutions, to reduce dependency on Russian gas and contain increasing prices. In this context, the Ecodesign framework plays an important role. Ecodesign measures not only improve the energy efficiency of common household appliances, they also significantly cut consumers’ energy bills. In 2016, BEUC commissioned a study to quantify the financial benefit EU consumers get from these energy efficiency rules. The authors found that consumers could save every year between 330 Euro ( just buying products covered by minimum Ecodesign rules) and 515 Euro (choosing the energy label’s top class). Considering the current higher energy prices and the stricter Ecodesign rules recently adopted by the European Commission, the authors decided to update the 2016 study. The results confirm that Ecodesign rules greatly contribute to shielding consumers from spiralling energy prices and reducing our dependence on energy imports.
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