EU in deal for more efficient electric motors

Manufacturers commit t halving sales of least efficient low-voltage motors by 2004

A voluntary commitment by EU manufacturers of low-voltage electric motors to halve sales of their least energy efficient motors by 2004 was formally approved today after the European Commission decided the accord did not contravene EU competition rules. The agreement is intended to reduce the sector's carbon dioxide emissions. It follows a recent policy paper advocating such deals as a major plank of the EU's energy efficiency strategy (ENDS Daily 27 April).

Negotiated by the Commission's transport and energy directorate with the European Committee of Manufacturers of Electrical Machines and Power Electronics (Cemep), the deal divides low voltage motors into three efficiency classes. Sales of products in the least efficient category will be reduced by half by the end of 2003. This class currently makes up 70% of EU production, four-fifths of which is represented by Cemep, and 30% of total EU sales.

The Commission said the agreement was necessary because consumers were unable to actively choose more efficient motors due to the lack of classification or labelling requirements. It said the deal did not restrict competition in the sector because the 50% reduction target applied to Cemep as a whole and not individual manufacturers.

Follow Up:
European Commission, tel: +32 2 299 1111; see also press release IP/00/508 dated 23 May on Rapid.

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