2 Mar 2018 AEDT
16 Mar 2018 AEDT

The Australian Government is proposing to change the energy efficiency regulations applicable to three phase electric motors. The purpose of the change is to reduce regulatory burden on industry by further harmonising the Australian energy efficiency regulatory arrangements applicable to three phase cage induction motors with those of many of our major trading partners.

In Australia, the Greenhouse and Energy Minimum Standards Act 2012 regulates the energy efficiency of mid-size electric motors through the Greenhouse and Energy Minimum Standards (Three Phase Cage Induction Motors) Determination 2012 (the Determination). It is proposed to update the Determination to effect the changes detailed below.

In New Zealand, the relevant legislation is the Energy Efficiency (Energy Using Products) Regulations 2002 (the New Zealand Regulations). It is proposed that New Zealand will adopt changes to their Regulations to align with the revised Determination, rather than create local standards.

The principal proposed change relates to the test method specified in the Determination. The current arrangements allowing suppliers to test motors to the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC) test standard for three-phase cage electric induction motors   – IEC 60034-2-1 Ed 2.0, Rotating electrical machines Part 2‑1: Standard methods for determining losses and efficiency from tests (excluding machines for traction vehicles) will remain. However, it is proposed to remove the current options for suppliers to test motors using either Method A or Method B specified in the current Determination.

Other proposed changes are to:

  1. Provide a ‘families of models’ facility that would enable models with equivalent electrical design to be registered on the same family registration.
  2. Provide a test procedure for totally enclosed air over (TEAO) motors.
  3. Make some relatively minor changes to align Australia’s minimum energy performance standards (MEPS) levels with IE2 (High Efficiency) levels and specify high efficiency requirements levels consistent with IE3 (Premium Efficiency) levels.
  4. Include efficiency tables for 60Hz motors.
  5. Include MEPS levels in the Determination rather than specifying them in AS/NZS 1359.5:2004.
  6. Reorganise the Determination to improve readability and clarity.

The exposure draft of the revised Determination can be accessed below and stakeholders are encouraged to provide any comments they may have on the proposed changes.

Key document


The closing date for written submissions is 5pm AEDT 16 March 2018.

Submissions should include ‘Motors Determination’ in the subject line and be sent via email to:

Proposed Outcomes

The Equipment Energy Efficiency (E3) Program has previously consulted with stakeholders concerning many of the above issues during the Motors Product Profile process in 2013 and with members of the Motors Technical Working Group in 2017. Stakeholders have generally supported the proposed changes.

It is proposed that the provisions of the new Determination will come into force in Australia six months after it is registered.

It is anticipated that the Determination will become effective by 1 January 2019.

The test report results (obtained using either Method A or Method B) that registrants have provided for current registrations will be used to verify whether registered motors meet the harmonised MEPS (IE2) levels.

Motors that fail to meet IE2 levels will no longer be compliant and suppliers will not be permitted to import further stock of these motors but will be allowed to supply existing stock until it is exhausted. The GEMS Regulator has identified that seven motors of the approximately 5,700 motors registered will be affected by the proposed changes to the MEPS levels. However, registrants are encouraged to check the details of their motors registrations to ensure that they will remain compliant after revised MEPS levels commence. At any time, registrants can supply a new test report to IEC 60034-2-1 for existing or new registrations demonstrating compliance with IE2 levels. Suppliers who wish to update their Australian registrations will be required to pay the applicable fee.