EU instates new eco-design rules for electrical items to reduce carbon impact

As of 1 October 2019, the European Commission have put new eco-design measures in place for electrical appliances with the aim of increasing recyclability and reducing Europe’s carbon footprint

This development came as a result of a consultation process on the topic which has subsequently determined 10 eco-design implementing Regulations which you can view HERE. The requirements focus on recyclability and repairability, specifically towards achieving circular economy objectives, by improving areas such as maintenance, re-use, upgrade and maintenance, to ultimately be achieved by increasing availability of spare parts.

Products affected

These regulations set out requirements for the following household and commercial product groups:

  • Refrigerators
  • Washing machines
  • Dishwashers
  • Electronic displays (including televisions)
  • Light sources and separate control gears
  • External power supplies
  • Electric motors
  • Refrigerators with a direct sales function (e.g. fridges in supermarkets, vending machines for cold drinks)
  • Power transformers
  • Welding equipment

The bigger picture

This move to better the eco-design of electrical products contributes to implementing the ‘Energy efficiency first' principle of the EU's Energy Union priority. Responding to this announcement, European Commissioner for Climate Action and Energy, Miguel Arias Cañete said:

“Together with smarter energy labels, our eco-design measures can save European consumers a lot of money, as well as help the EU reduce its greenhouse gas emissions. Eco-design is therefore a key element in the fight against climate change and a direct contribution to meeting the goals set in the Paris Agreement. As we move towards our long-term goal of a fully decarbonised EU by 2050, our energy efficiency and eco-design strategy will become ever more important”.

Expected deliverables

The European Commission estimates that these measures will deliver an approximate reduction of 46 million tonnes of CO2 equivalent and save a European household an average of €150 annually.

Entry into force

Looking ahead, following this inception the texts will be published in the Official Journal of the European Union in the coming weeks and will come into force 20 days later. Subsequently, the regulations will apply to the aforementioned products placed on the market from 2021.

Further reading

You can access more information about energy labelling and eco-design HERE, as well as more details on the ‘Energy efficiency first’ principle of the Energy Union strategy, as mentioned earlier, HERE

If you have any queries with regards to these new requirements and if relevant, how this will affect your business, please get in touch –