This is an excerpt from EERE Network News, a weekly electronic newsletter.
DOE Tightens Efficiency Standards for Utility Transformers
DOE published a final rule on October 12th that sets new energy efficiency standards for distribution transformers, the boxes or cylinders installed on utility poles that lower the voltage of the electricity delivered to homes and businesses. The rule specifically applies to liquid-immersed transformers and medium-voltage, dry-type transformers. Utility transformers are already extremely efficient at delivering energy with minimal losses, but because they handle large amounts of electricity, small gains in efficiency can yield large energy savings. According to the published rule, the new rule could raise the cost of liquid-immersed transformers by up to 12%, but should decrease electrical losses by as much as 23%. It could also raise the cost of medium-voltage, dry-type transformers by up to 13%, but should decrease electrical losses by as much as 26%. See the final rule as published in the October 12th edition of the Federal Register.
DOE is also preparing to propose new rules for residential clothes dryers and room air conditioners. DOE has prepared a framework document to guide the process and will hold an informal public meeting a week from now, on Wednesday, October 24th, in Washington, D.C. Comments are due by November 7th. DOE's Appliance and Commercial Equipment Standards Program is in charge of establishing these new rules, and the meeting notice, meeting agenda, and framework document on the program's Web site.