Thanks for joining us here today. I'm Sam Smith from the Greenhouse and Energy Minimum Standards Regulator within the Department of the Environment and Energy in Canberra. Welcome to the information session on the new zoned energy rating label for air conditioners. I'd like to introduce Chris Howe from the GEMS Regulator as well who's going to answer some questions later on about compliance and I'd like to introduce Tony Richards and James Hoogstad from the Department who are going to talk about the Ozone Protection and Synthetic Greenhouse Gas program later on.

To start I'd like to acknowledge the traditional owners of the land that we are meeting on and pay my respects to their Elders past, present and emerging.  

[Slide: Agenda]

The agenda of what we're talking about today; so I'll give the dry stuff first. A bit of a brief overview of air conditioning regulation, talk about the new zoned energy rating label or ZERL, talk about what's changed from the old label and why, then we'll talk specifically about the changes for portable air conditioners, look at registration and compliance including responsibilities that retailers have when advertising units in store and online. Then I've got a section of answers to questions that you'll likely be asked, or you might be asked by your customers, we'll have a Q&A session on the zoned energy rating label section, and we'll move to morning tea.

After morning tea we'll have the presentation by the Ozone Protection and

Synthetic Greenhouse Gas program.

Now, a few things as we go through this presentation there will likely be some areas where people in the room will absolutely know what I'm talking about but there will be people who won't. Installers may know everything that I'm talking about but retailers may not.  We just need to make sure that everyone's on the same page so I'm really not trying to teach you how to suck eggs or tell you how to do your job, just try to make sure that everyone in the audience is on the same page and knows what they're talking about.  We'll be handing out a feedback form at morning tea. This has options on it for you to select if you'd like to receive any more of the training material that we provided, like the fact sheet that we have and the booklets and anything else we develop. If you put your details on there we'll be able to send you out more copies of those which you can use to train your staff or inform your customers. We'll also provide an electronic copy of this presentation so you don't need to be madly trying to scramble down links or write them down as we go through, and we are presenting this roadshow through Australia. This session is being filmed, but only me I'm the only one that's being filmed so none of you are being filmed. The video of this will be up on our website, the energy website afterwards.  

[Slide: Introduction to energy efficiency regulation]

An introduction to energy efficiency regulations. Air conditioners and other appliances are regulated in Australia under the GEMS Act or the Greenhouse and Energy Minimum

Standards Act. This used to be a bunch of state-based legislation but has now been pulled together into the national framework which is the GEMS Act. There are 22 different products that are covered under the GEMS Act but only seven products require energy rating labels. The seven that are labelled are air conditioners, fridges and freezers, washing machines, dryers, dishwashers, TVs and computer monitors. The way it works in terms of regulation is each GEMS product has a separate legislative

Instrument called a determination which sets out all of the things that need need to be covered for a product to be registered in Australia. I'm not going to go into the technical detail of determinations; that's an entirely different session. Three main things that need to be covered are the energy efficiency requirements, so often in this we talk about MEPS or minimum energy performance standards. MEPS are the minimum limit, or the minimum performance, that a unit has to meet to be able to be sold in Australia. There are also labelling requirements which cover what has a label, what doesn't have a label, where labels have to be affixed, and things like that. There are occasionally other requirements which I'm not going to get into today.

[Slide: Air conditioning regulation]

Air conditioners have been regulated for energy efficiency since 2004 but have been required to show an energy label since 1987.

The determination says what types of air conditioners must display an energy label, what must not and a couple of other things. It's the air conditioner determination that was signed off by the Energy Minister in March this year that set out the new rules for air conditioners and has set out the new zoned energy rating label, the ZERL.


[Slide: timeline: what is happening when]


What is happening when?  Right now, manufacturers or importers can either register their product to the old determination which is the 2013 determination or they can register their product to the new 2019 determination. If they go to the 2013 determination they can only use the old energy rating label.  If they move to the 2019 determination, they can use the ZERL. What this is going to result in is there's going to be two different labels in store for up to five years. From the 1st of April 2020 all new models that are registered and any models that have their registration renewed, they must use the new label.  What the result of this will be is we'll see portable air conditioners registered and labelled for the first time and you'll start seeing more models with the new label in store but we will still see, like in the image here, units with the old label next to units with the new label for potentially up to five years. I'll talk a bit more in detail about that in future slides.

[Slide: Customers are buying more efficient products]

What's the point of regulation? Regulation improves energy efficiency but more importantly customers are aware of energy efficiency and customers choose to buy more efficient products.

I'll explain that through this graph which is a bit complex. Every blue dot on this graph represents the energy efficiency of a less than four kilowatt unit that was registered in a certain year, years progressed along the x-axis.

The red line shows the average of energy efficiency of all units registered that year. The green line shows the weighted sales average of units that customers are choosing to buy. What this shows, because the green line is above the red line, customers on average are choosing to buy air conditioners that are more efficient than the average unit on the market.

Customers are interested in energy efficiency, they want energy efficiency, energy efficient products, and they want lower energy bills.  

[Video plays]

The energy rating label on air conditioners just got a whole lot cooler. Where you live changes the performance of your air conditioner so what works well in a hot climate may not work as well in the cold. For three different climate zones there are different star ratings. Choose what's best for where you live to keep your running costs down and make your space more comfortable. Work out the correct sized unit for the space that needs heating or cooling.

Then use the capacity on the label to compare similar sized models. And remember more stars is more energy efficient. Use the energy consumption to calculate an annual running cost.

Lower energy consumption means lower running costs. In cold climates, use the two degree heating capacity for models that can cope better with frosty conditions. The label also shows how loud the air-conditioner is at full power; good to know if you want to limit noise for yourself and your neighbours. The new rating label will start appearing in stores from late 2019. For more information go to

[Slide: presentation again]