Legislative amendments for introducing third phase of Mandatory Energy Efficiency Labelling Scheme submitted to Legislative Council

     The Energy Efficiency (Labelling of Products) Ordinance (Amendment of Schedule 1) Order 2017 was submitted to the Legislative Council (LegCo) today (May 2) to introduce the third phase of the Mandatory Energy Efficiency Labelling Scheme (MEELS).

     The Government proposes to extend the coverage of the MEELS to cover five additional types of electrical products, namely televisions, electric storage water heaters, induction cookers, washing machines with a rated washing capacity exceeding 7 kilograms but not exceeding 10kg, and room air conditioners of reverse cycle type (i.e. with both heating and cooling functions).

     "It is estimated that the potential annual energy saving arising from the third phase of the MEELS is around 150 million kilowatt-hours (kWh), or an annual reduction of carbon dioxide emissions of 105 000 tonnes. The total amount of energy saved from the expanded MEELS is expected to be more than 600 million kWh per annum," a government spokesman said.

     To prepare for the third phase of the MEELS, the Government conducted a public consultation in 2015 and established a task force comprising representatives of the relevant trade associations. They are in general supportive of the proposal. In addition, the Energy Efficiency and Conservation Sub-committee under the Energy Advisory Committee was consulted on and supported the proposal, while the Legislative Council Panel on Environmental Affairs was consulted in January 2016 and Members were in general supportive of the proposal.

     In line with the practice of the first and second phases of the MEELS, an 18-month transitional period will be provided for the trade to prepare for the implementation of the third phase.

     The amendment order is subject to LegCo's approval by the positive vetting procedures. Upon the approval of this amendment order, the Government will table another amendment order, which provides for the specifications of energy labels for the products and other details, for negative vetting by LegCo.

     To enhance public awareness of the importance of using energy-efficient products, the Government has implemented the MEELS in phases through the enactment of the Energy Efficiency (Labelling of Products) Ordinance (Cap. 598) in May 2008. Under the Ordinance, energy labels are required to be shown on prescribed products for supply in Hong Kong to inform consumers of their energy efficiency performance. The first phase of the MEELS commenced in November 2009 and covered room air conditioners in respect of their cooling function, refrigerating appliances, and compact fluorescent lamps. In 2011, the Government implemented the second phase of the MEELS following amendments to the Schedules to the Ordinance, under which the scope of the MEELS was expanded to include washing machines with a rated washing capacity not exceeding 7kg and dehumidifiers.

Ends/Tuesday, May 2, 2017
Issued at HKT 17:45