Consensus agreement on air conditioner efficiency standards in the US

On November 11, 2004, air conditioner manufacturers and energy efficiency advocates in the US announced that they had reached a consensus agreement on federal equipment efficiency standards for air conditioners and heat pumps used in many commercial buildings. The current federal standard, Energy Efficiency Ratio (EER) of 8.9, was established by Congress in 1992. This agreement implies that the EER will increase, as of January 1, 2010, to 11.2, a 26% improvement in efficiency. The agreement was negotiated over the past 8 months by air conditioner manufacturers, represented by their trade association, the Air conditioning and Refrigeration Institute (ARI), and by energy efficiency supporters, represented by the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy (ACEEE). According to the ACEEE, the agreement will reduce peak power needs by about 7 400 MW by 2020, equivalent to the output of 25 new power plants of 300 MW each and will also result in net benefits to building owners of about 2.4 billion USD for commercial air conditioners bought over the 2010-2030 period. The agreement is currently being provided to both the US Department of Energy and members of Congress.