DOE Rolls Back Trump-Era Roadblocks to New Energy Efficiency Standards

On November 19, 2021, the Department of Energy published a final rule titled “Energy Conservation Program for Appliance Standards: Procedures, Interpretations, and Policies for Consideration in New or Revised Energy Conservation Standards and Test Procedures for Consumer Products and Commercial/Industrial Equipment.”

The final rule reverses amendments to DOE’s process rule made in 2020, which had added roadblocks to new efficiency standards by establishing a new threshold for the amount of energy conservation required to trigger the process of updating standards and by requiring DOE to codify private sector consensus standards for test procedures. In its final rule, DOE states that the current revisions are consistent with longstanding DOE practice and would remove unnecessary obstacles to DOE’s ability to met its statutory obligations under the Energy Policy and Conservation Act.