Buying energy-efficient products: the EU energy label explained

MEPs approved plans to simplify energy labels. Check out our infographic to find out how energy consumption is measured and how much it costs.

infographic on energy efficiency
Check out the facts in our infographic

Using energy more efficiently is one of the easier ways to cut your bills. Many household appliances, such as lamps, televisions and vacuum cleaners, carry a standardised label to help assess their energy efficiency,  In June 2017, MEPs approved plans to simplify this labelling system to make it even easier for consumers to compare.

Energy efficiency is about being able to provide the same performance with less energy. To promote it, the EU introduced the first energy label in 1994, classifying appliances from G (least efficient) to A (most efficient). As manufacturers improved the efficiency of their products, the label was extended to A+++. However, the introduction of A+ and higher classes reduced the effectiveness of the energy label as most products now tended to be in Class A or higher.

In June 2017, MEPs approved  proposals to restore the original A-G scale and to establish a mechanism for rescaling to accommodate further improvements in energy efficiency without having to create new classes. The new rules also include measures to improve the monitoring of national markets and the creation of a new product database.

Italian EFDD member Dario Tamburrano was in charge of steering the proposal through Parliament.

EU measures to promote cleaner energy also address the question of renewables and the energy efficiency of buildings.