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EPEE conference pushes energy efficiency

Manufacturers’ association calls for mandatory energy reduction targets for Energy Efficiency Directive.

The European Partnership for Energy and the Environment (EPEE), which represents the refrigeration, air-conditioning and heat pump industry in Europe, has backed mandatory energy efficiency targets, despite the potential extra investment required by companies.

Speaking at EPEE’s annual meeting, director general Andrea Voigt, said: “Energy efficiency is not just a buzzword for our sector, we can provide the solutions to get to a low carbon economy.”

“EPEE supports the principle of mandatory targets on energy efficiency as proposed in the draft Energy Efficiency Directive.

“Member States need to understand that even if the initial investment may be higher, the reduced operating cost will ensure that the overall lifecycle cost will turn out to be much lower.”

“That’s particularly true for energy efficient technologies such as heat pumps.”

Paul Hodson, head of unit in DG Energy pointed to the forthcoming Eco-Design Directive (introduced January 2013) as proof of progress: “Even though much of the Commission’s focus has been on the successful conclusion of the Energy Efficiency Directive, we would not be able to make progress without the Eco-Design Directive.”

“This framework is an imperative to reach the energy efficiency targets. It shows how a comprehensive approach towards products that are part of our daily life can save energy, money, and help reduce greenhouse gas emissions.”

On the subject of the forthcoming F-Gas regulation revision, it was general agreed that there still wasn’t currently a ‘one-size-fits-all’ solution that offered a balance of cost and efficiency.

Ray Gluckman, technical director at the British research institute SKM Enviros rounded up the discussions, saying: “Lower GWP alternatives to the HFCs used today have already been introduced, where it makes sense in terms of energy efficiency, safety and affordability.

“A phase down would give the right stimulus to further accelerate this tendency.”

Also in attendance were the contractor body AREA, the International Institute of Refrigeration IIR, the Environmental Investigation Agency EIA.

More than 100 participants from EU institutions, industry, academia and NGO’s attended this year’s annual general meeting of EPEE, the European association of manufacturers of refrigeration, air-conditioning and heat pump equipment.

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