New refrigerator standards will save consumers big time in energy costs

New refrigerataor standards in 2014 will let consumers save up to 25 percent in energy use

Environmentalists working hand in hand with consumer groups and an entire industry to come up with energy efficiency standards that work for consumers?

If you’re thinking it’s unlikely, think again. Case in point is the Department of Energy’s recent announcement about new standards being issued that will cut the energy use of most new refrigerators by as much as 25 percent.

These new standards, which will take effect in the Fall of 2014, will for the first time, include energy usage of icemakers in the equation. For some reason, this important device – now as common in most households as an automatic garage door – has been neglected or overlooked in previous energy standards going all the way back to their inception in 1987. Now, however, energy labels will reflect that units that include automatic ice makers use more energy than those without.

These new standards, say consumer, environment and energy efficiency groups, will save consumers money, create jobs, reduce pollution and spur innovation and investment.

The graph show just how much consumers can save with new refrigerators

The average new refrigerator today is around 20 percent larger and costs around sixty percent less than one from the 1970’s. What’s odd about this is that fridges today are cleaner and have more features than ever before. And still they use less energy!

When the new standards take effect, a new fridge will use $215 – $270 less per year in electricity than a comparable unit which met the first state standards set in 1978.  The DOE also estimates this will cut CO2 emissions by 344 million metric tons over 30 years.

This new legislation was hammered out by such diverse groups as the National Resources Defense Council, the Consumer Federation of America, the Alliance to Save Energy – a coalition of prominent business, government, environmental and consumer leaders – and the Appliance Standards Awareness Project.

Now who says folks with different perspectives can’t play nice together.

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