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Minimum energy performance standards (MEPS) and labelling

Minimum energy performance standards (MEPS) and energy rating labels help improve the energy efficiency of our products, and enable consumers to choose products that use less energy.

This section provides information for:

  • Importers, manufacturers or sellers of products that are regulated for energy efficiency and must meet MEPS and/or energy rating label requirements.
  • People who want to learn more about EECA's work to improve the energy efficiency of our products and appliances.

Current product standards and meeting legal requirements

Many products are covered by the Energy Efficiency (Energy Using Products) Regulations 2002 and must meet certain requirements before they can be legally sold.

General requirements are set out in the regulations, and specific details for each product type - like MEPS levels and/or energy rating labelling details - are described in product standards.

If you import, manufacture or sell a product that is regulated for energy efficiency, it is important to understand what your legal obligations are.

Proposed product standards and strategies

A number of products are being investigated for potential energy efficiency measures, which may include minimum energy performance standards (MEPS) or energy rating labelling.

Some products have existing MEPS and/or labelling requirements. These are reviewed from time to time, in consultation with industry, to ensure they keep up with advances in technology.

Other products and industry sectors are being investigated to explore how cost-effective energy efficiency improvements might be achieved.

Find out more about proposed product standards and strategies.

Why have product standards?

Improving the energy efficiency of products and appliances sold in New Zealand has real economic and environmental benefits through reducing energy demand and greenhouse gas emissions.

For consumers, it means the range of product choices available to buy will use less energy to deliver the same performance. This saves on running costs over the entire life of the products.

Product standards, which include MEPS levels and energy rating labels, are effective tools to help improve the energy performance of the products we use.

For more information on which products are currently required to meet MEPS or labelling requirements, go to the current product standards page.

Read about the impact EECA's work has had on heat pumps in The Heat Pump Success Story.

About minimum energy performance standards (MEPS)

Products covered by minimum energy performance standards (MEPS) must meet or exceed set levels for energy performance before they can be sold to consumers.

Setting energy performance levels creates a more efficient range of products for consumers to choose from by:

  • Encouraging manufacturers to continually improve the efficiency of their products
  • Preventing poorly performing products from being sold
  • Improving the average efficiency of products available here.

MEPS are one of the most cost effective ways to encourage energy efficiency improvements in products.

About energy rating labels

Products with energy rating label requirements must display the label when they are made available for sale.

Energy rating labels encourage people to buy more efficient products by letting them understand and compare how much energy a product uses.

The label gives consumers:

  • A star rating, so they can easily compare energy performance between similar models
  • The product's estimated annual energy use (except for the label on heat pumps which shows different energy performance information).

Energy rating label

By being able to choose more efficient products, consumers can lock in years of energy and power savings - which is particularly important for appliances with long life spans, like a fridge.

Energy rating labels also encourage manufacturers to continually improve product efficiency as consumer demand for better energy performance increases.

On the EECA ENERGYWISE™ website you can find more information for consumers about energy rating labels.

Note that EECA also administers a separate - and complementary - voluntary label called ENERGY STAR, for which only the most energy efficient products on the market can qualify. Find out more about ENERGY STAR.

Working with Australia to improve our products

New Zealand works together with Australia on improving the efficiency of our products, under a joint programme called the Equipment Energy Efficiency (E3) Programme.

The E3 programme develops energy efficiency measures for a range of residential, commercial, and industrial products, creating economic and environmental benefits.

Aligning product energy efficiency measures across New Zealand and Australia reinforces development towards a single marketplace. It allows both countries to honour their commitments under the Trans-Tasman Mutual Recognition Arrangement (TTMRA).

Aligning product standards also keeps business compliance costs low as they don't have to meet differing requirements in the two countries.

 

More information