Public Consultation on the Proposed Revisions to the Minimum Energy Performance Standards and Mandatory Energy Labelling

National Environment Agency

National Environment Agency - Energy Efficiency & Conservation Department

Consultation Period: 03 May 2018 - 31 May 2018
Status: Open
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Detailed Description

Introduction

The National Environment Agency (NEA) of Singapore is seeking feedback on the proposed revisions to the Minimum Energy Performance Standards (MEPS) and Mandatory Energy Labelling Scheme (MELS). The consultation exercise will start on 3 May 2018 and end on 31 May 2018

Background 

2 To help individuals purchase appliances that are more energy efficient, NEA introduced the Mandatory Energy Labelling Scheme (MELS) and Minimum Energy Performance Standards (MEPS) in 2008 and 2011 respectively. Under MELS, manufacturers and suppliers are required to affix energy labels to appliances that are regulated.  The energy label lists out the relative energy performance of an appliance, where more ticks indicate higher energy efficiency. MELS currently covers household refrigerators, air-conditioners, clothes dryers, televisions and some general purpose lamps.  

3 The aim of MEPS is to remove the most inefficient appliances from the market. In doing so, consumers avoid getting locked into the high energy consumption and costs of inefficient appliances. MEPS currently cover air-conditioners, refrigerators, clothes dryers and some general purpose lamps.

4 Lamps are commonly found in homes and buildings. From the 2017 household energy consumption study conducted by NEA, lighting accounted for about 6% of household consumption and was among the top 5 energy-consuming household appliances and devices (refer to Annex A for a breakdown of household energy consumption by appliance).  

Proposed Revisions to MELS and MEPS

5 NEA is proposing the following enhancements to the MELS and MEPS:

a) Raising of MEPS for incandescent bulbs

b) Introduction of MELS for other lamps types

c) Introduction of MEPS for fluorescent lamp ballasts

d) Mandatory display of Energy Label in publicity materials

Raising of MEPS for incandescent bulbs

6 MELS and MEPS for general purpose lamps, namely incandescent bulbs (tungsten filament & tungsten halogen), compact fluorescent bulbs with integrated ballasts (CFLi) and light emitting diode (LED) bulbs were introduced in 2015. Currently, MEPS for incandescent bulbs, and for CFLi and LED bulbs are set at 1-tick and 2-tick respectively. More details of the standards can be found in Table 1 at Annex B.

7 CFLi and LED bulbs are now the most common general purpose lamps used in homes, accounting for about 95% of the regulated lamps market. Consumers prefer CFLi and LED bulbs as they are more energy efficient and last much longer than incandescent bulbs1.The price of CFLi and LED bulbs have also fallen significantly. Consumers will enjoy lifecycle cost savings by switching from incandescent bulbs to CFLi and LED bulbs, as shown in Table 2 at Annex B. Given these considerations, it is proposed that the MEPS for incandescent lamps be raised to 2 ticks. Please refer to Table 3 in Annex B for further details on the proposed MEPS for incandescent bulbs.

Proposed Introduction of MELS to Other Lamp Types

8 Apart from incandescent, CFLi and LED bulbs, other commonly used lamps in homes include compact fluorescent lamps without integrated ballasts (CFLni) and linear fluorescent lamps (LFL). To help consumers differentiate and select the more energy efficient models, NEA is proposing to extend the MELS to the following:

a) CFLni with G24d lamp cap;

b) LFL with diameter of 26mm (T8) and length 0.5 – 1.5m, and

c) the LED direct replacements2 of (a) and (b).

9 When this proposal is adopted, suppliers of CFLni with G24d lamp cap and LFL-T8, and their direct LED replacements will be required to affix an energy label on the lamp packaging. The energy label and proposed rating system are shown in Diagram 1 and Table 4 respectively at Annex C.  

10 In addition to energy efficiency, there will also be reliability and quality standards, namely minimum requirements for lumen maintenance and lifespan. These are necessary to ensure the quality of the lamps and that the life cycle cost benefits are realized and sustained. More details can be found in Table 5 at Annex C.   

Proposed Introduction of MEPS for Fluorescent Lamp Ballasts

11 Fluorescent lamps such as the CFLni and LFL typically require a ballast to start the lamp and regulate the current.  There are two types of ballasts, namely:

a) magnetic ballasts, and

b) electronic ballasts.

12 Ballasts constantly draw power whenever a fluorescent lamp is lit. In general, electronic ballasts are more energy efficient than magnetic ones which have higher losses. To rate the energy efficiency of magnetic and electronic ballasts, the EU adopts an Energy Efficiency Index (EEI) classification system (refer to the Table 6 in Annex D for the classification of ballasts).

13 As shown in Table 7 at Annex D, consumers can enjoy life cycle cost savings by choosing the more efficient ballasts. It is proposed that MEPS for ballasts be set at EEI class B1.  This will only apply to ballasts used in conjunction with general purpose lamps. Ballasts that are intended for special purpose lamps or cannot be tested separately from their lamps will not be covered. Please refer to Annex E for a list of ballasts that will not be covered under the proposed MEPS. 

Proposed Display of Energy Label in Publicity Materials

14 NEA recognizes that retailers and suppliers may tap on different avenues to promote their products. These include advertisements and brochures, both online and in hard copy. To ensure that consumers receive the same energy efficiency information as seen in the retail stores, NEA is proposing that retailers and suppliers include the Energy Labels of regulated appliances in all their publicity materials, both digital and non-digital3. Where it is not practicable to display the Energy Label in a legible manner, the number of ticks may be indicated in a font no less prominent than that of the main text. Please refer to Annex F for examples of how the required energy efficiency information may be displayed.

Registration and Testing 

15 Suppliers of regulated lighting products must register their products with NEA and produce test reports to demonstrate compliance. Test reports from the following categories of testing laboratories will be accepted:

a) Manufacturer’s in-house testing laboratories;

b) Testing laboratories in countries other than Singapore that are accredited by their local accreditation bodies and have signed a Mutual Recognition Arrangement with the Singapore Accreditation Council (SAC) to carry out the test in accordance with the applicable test standards; and

c) Testing laboratories that are accredited by the SAC to carry out the test in accordance with the applicable test standards.

16 The International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC) and International Commission on Illumination (or Commission Internationale De L’Eclairage, CIE) standards, which are internationally recognized test standards, will be adopted as the test standards for the new lamp types covered in this proposal. Please refer to Annex G for the list of relevant test standards. 

Timeline

17 The proposed revisions set out from Paragraphs 5 to 16, if adopted, would take effect from August 2019. Lighting suppliers which are affected by the proposed revisions will be given a 1-year grace period from August 2019 to July 2020 to:

a) Clear existing stocks of incandescent bulbs imported before 1 August 2019 that do not meet the revised MEPS of 2-tick;

b) Clear existing stocks of fluorescent lamp ballasts imported before 1 August 2019 that do not meet MEPS of EEI Class B1; and

c) Register CFLni with G24d lamp cap and LFL-T8, and their direct LED replacements under MELS. 

Public Consultation

18 This proposal is released for the purpose of consultation.  All comments received during the consultation exercise will be reviewed and taken into consideration. Interested parties can submit their feedback to NEA_energylabel@nea.gov.sg. The consultation exercise will end on 31 May 2018.

19 To ensure that the consultation is productive and focused, respondents are requested to observe these guidelines when providing their feedback:

a) Identify yourself as well as the organization you represent, if applicable so that we may follow up with you to clarify any issues, if necessary.

b) Be clear and concise in your comments.

c) Focus your comments on the proposal and how it can be improved.

d) As far as possible, substantiate your points with illustrations, examples, data or alternative suggestions.

1A 7W LED bulb or 12W CFLi has the same lighting output as a 42W Halogen incandescent bulb. Typically, the lifespans of a LED bulb and CFLi are about 3 and 6 times that of a Halogen incandescent bulb.  

2For LED direct replacements of T8 LFL, it refers to double-capped LED lamps that comply with the IEC 62776 safety specifications. These are designed for direct replacement and do not require any internal modification of the original LFL-T8 luminaire.

3Publicity materials (digital & non-digital) include, but are not limited to newspapers advertisements, promotional flyers and websites.