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New Laboratory Testing and Compliance Opportunities in Consumer Electronics: Energy Efficiency Standards and E-Waste Programs

April 21, 2010

New Laboratory Testing and Compliance Opportunities in Consumer Electronics: Energy Efficiency Standards and E-Waste Programs

April 21, 2010

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New Laboratory Testing and Compliance Opportunities in Consumer Electronics: Energy Efficiency Standards and E-Waste Programs

 

Fish & Richardson sees new and increased opportunities for laboratory testing services in the field of consumer electronics (CE). As the federal and state governments impose new environmental standards and filing requirements on CE, manufacturers will require testing and other guidance from qualified laboratories.

 

Recent developments taking place in this arena include the following:

 

• Manufacturers of external power supplies (EPS) for CE (i.e. wall adaptors) must meet certain energy efficiency standards, implement new marking requirements, and must file certifications with the Department of Energy (DOE) by July 6, 2010 – or face civil penalties that can be assessed daily.

• DOE has recently proposed major changes to its EPS and battery charger test procedures. The proceeding offers periodic opportunities for industry comments.

• Under DOE’s Energy Conservation Program for Consumer Products, certain home appliances such as refrigerators and air conditioners must meet efficiency standards, be properly tested, and bear compliance labels.

• The Environmental Protection Agency requires certification by an accredited test lab for products to qualify for Energy-Star Labeling. EPA recently released criteria for recognition of accreditation bodies and laboratories.

• The Energy-Star program for EPS concluded December 31, 2010. Accordingly, manufacturers must cease using the Energy-Star name and mark or EPS graphic in association with all EPS manufactured on or after December 31, 2010.

 

• Certain states now impose their own efficiency standards and require registration for home audio equipment, DVD players and, soon, televisions.

 

• The Federal Trade Commission amended its Appliance Labeling Rule to require televisions manufactured after May 10, 2011 to display EnergyGuide labels. The labels will provide customers with information such as the estimated yearly energy costs and the cost range compared to other similar models.

• 24 states now have e-waste disposal programs which affect manufacturers, importers, and vendors of various CE products. Civil penalties for non-compliance can be steep.  New York State’s new program is the broadest yet in the U.S., subjecting producers of a wide variety of CE products to registration, reporting and mandatory adoption of recycling programs.

 

Fish continues to monitor regulatory developments with each of these environmental compliance programs. We assist test laboratories, CE manufacturers, and vendors in the registration and certification requirements, and responding to enforcement inquiries from federal and state agencies.

 

To view a jurisdiction-specific matrix of compliance requirements in the United States and Canada, please click here.

 

New Laboratory Testing and Compliance Opportunities in Consumer Electronics: Energy Efficiency Standards and E-Waste Programs

 

 

Terry G. Mahn Donna Balaguer Joseph Taylor
202-626-6421 202-626-7719 202-626-7730
mahn@fr.com balaguer@fr.com j.taylor@fr.com

 

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