22 December 2015

Message from the GEMS Regulator

As the year draws to a close, it’s timely to reflect on all that’s been achieved across the E3 Program in 2015. My predecessor, David Walker, concluded his term as the GEMS Regulator mid-year with the completion of the GEMS review and Energy Ministers’ response to its recommendations. It’s been another busy year for GEMS registrations, with almost 5000 applications assessed and more than 1100 enquiries answered.  We also continued to enhance the registration system, making it easier than ever for industry to meet its obligations under the GEMS Act. We have significantly raised the profile of our compliance efforts with a new look compliance presence on energyrating.gov.au. We’re now publishing a wealth of information about compliance, compliance monitoring plans and activities, and market surveillance and check testing results. More GEMS inspectors have been appointed and are visibly ensuring registration and labelling compliance across the range of GEMS products.  We consulted with industry on commercial and LED lighting product profiles, and provided technical analysis that contributed to voluntary minimum performance for street lighting luminaires. Internationally we contributed to performance standards on LED lighting, through our involvement in the International Energy Agency, and through our support of the UNEP en.lighten programme we helped ASEAN countries begin work to harmonise lighting standards. We published a research report on ‘Gas space heaters – performance testing and energy labelling’, which investigated the accuracy and reliability of claims on energy labels of gas space heaters, and published Australia’s first portable air conditioner test standard AS/NZS 3823.1.5:2015.  We also released the Residential Baseline Study, looking at energy use in the Australian and New Zealand residential sectors covering the period 2000 to 2030, and released revised determinations for clothes washing machines, rotary clothes dryers and dishwashers. We worked actively with retailers to have the Energy Rating Icon displayed on online shopping websites, and conducted further research and development on the Zoned Energy Rating Label (ZERL). We also redeveloped the energy rating website and relaunched it with a range of improvements including a new calculator to compare the running costs of labelled appliances.

In New Zealand, EECA celebrated the unveiling of three new websites www.energywise.govt.nz, www.eecabusiness.govt.nz and www.eeca.govt.nz, and the launch of the ENERGY STAR Awards.  New Zealand also saw record numbers of products being labelled, through the success of initiatives such as the “No-Label No-Display” policy and retailer head office engagement which saw compliance jump to almost 100%. As we wrap up yet another busy year, I extend my best wishes to all in the E3 Program ‘family’ and look forward to all that 2016 brings.   Michelle Croker GEMS Regulator Missing media.