New labeling regulation for the energy efficiency of air conditioners (AC) in Brazil has recently been published by the National Institute of Metrology, Standardization, and Industrial Quality (Inmetro).
Brazil’s new regulation, which was published on July 1, has been designed toincrease the stringency of labeling standards for AC equipment. It adopts a two-phased approach that will eventually result in future ‘A’ graded AC being more than twice as efficient as those currently labeled ‘A’. The regulation also adopts the seasonal metrics in Brazil, taking ISO 16358 as the reference.
At present, each AC unit sold in Brazil must include a label classifying its energy efficiency. It is widely known that ‘A’ grade equipment is more efficient, but the current threshold for top-rated products is particularly unambitious, meaning that most of the ACs currently sold in the country have an ‘A’ grade.
The new regulation determines that:
- from December 2022 (Phase 1), ‘A’ labeled ACs must be at least 52% more efficient than current ‘A’ rated models; and
- from December 2025 (Phase 2), ‘A’ labeled ACs must be at least 108% more efficient than current ‘A’ rated models.
The early adoption of Phase 1 is optional, but many of Brazil’s major manufacturers have already expressed their intention to adopt the Phase 1 level immediately.
The new regulation serves to encourage the industry to produce more high-efficiency equipment, and to help consumers easily identify the more efficient products on the market.
The Kigali Project – led by the Instituto Clima e Sociedade (iCS), with participation from grantees and partners, notably Lawrence Berkeley National Lab, CLASP, IDEC, IEI, Mitsidi, and Uma Gota no Oceano – has been key in the development and approval of the new regulation. iCS also commissioned research to provide evidence to support the development of the regulation, provided high-level, evidence-based contributions in the public hearing, and supported campaign efforts on this subject.
THE KIGALI AMENDMENT
Signed in 2016, during a meeting in the capital of Rwanda (hence its name), the Kigali Amendment includes hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs) under the Montreal Protocol¹. These are powerful greenhouse gases that need to be controlled and reduced. The amendment will enter into force on 1 January 2019. Among other aspects, it will establish a timetable with specific deadlines and percentages for countries from different economic groups to reduce and ultimately eliminate the use of these so-called fluorinated gases, replacing them with others that do not contribute to global warming.
In the specific case of Brazil, as in other developing countries, the following timetable has been defined – which may be revised every five years if new technologies become available in the market:
To support countries, businesses and communities in relation to the Kigali Amendment, the Kigali Cooling Efficiency Program – K-CEP. It is funded by international philanthropic foundations and works to enable us to live in a world where cooling is ecologically sustainable, is energy efficient and accessible to all. With these objectives, the program supports institutions, public policies and technological capacity, as well as leveraging funding for these initiatives in several countries. Brazil participates in this program with the Kigali Project with the Institute for Climate and Society Institute (iCS) as the implementing agency.
LINES OF ACTION
The Kigali Project has its structure comprised of four components:
- To support the planning of the electricity sector to include energy efficient measures for the air conditioning sector and to relate efficiency with the plan for the reduction of the use of hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs) in air-conditioning equipment.
- To act so that the minimum levels of energy efficiency adopted for air conditioners in Brazil, the Brazilian Labeling Program and the Procel Seal, are revised to get closer to international best practices. In this regard, the project includes the development of studies and diagnostics in the market and the evaluation of the impact of the proposed changes in relation to manufacturers, consumers and greenhouse gas emissions. These studies are carried out in partnership with the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory and are monitored by an advisory committee with the participation of representatives from Inmetro, Procel, the Energy Research Office (EPE) and Cepel.
- To contribute to the technological updating and, therefore, to improve the energy efficiency of the sector of compressors in Brazil. For this, the project participates in the elaboration of a national diagnosis of the compressor market and a study of the technical and economic feasibility for the production of more efficient equipment, as well as identifying investors who are potentially interested in participating in this market. CLASP is our technical partner in this study.
- To contribute to overcome the barriers of energy efficiency in the air conditioning sector. For this, the project provides support for the structuring of test laboratories and also for mechanisms that stimulate the consumer to seek more efficient products and to influence the market.
Cover picture: http://kigali.org.br/en/kigali-project/