This is an excerpt from EERE Network News, a weekly electronic newsletter.

July 20, 2011

New Energy Star Initiative Recognizes the Most Energy-Efficient Products

DOE and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced on July 14 the first Energy Star products recognized as the most energy-efficient in their categories. The announcement covers four categories—clothes washers, televisions, heating and cooling equipment, and refrigerator-freezers—although the "Most Efficient" lists are currently only available for clothes washers, televisions, central air conditioners, and air-source heat pumps. The new designation of "Most Efficient," representing approximately the top 5% of the models on the market, aims to provide manufacturers with an incentive for greater product energy efficiency while providing consumers new information about the products that comprise the top tier in each category. The pilot program is part of Energy Star's overall commitment to protect people's health and the environment by encouraging energy efficiency.

The "Most Efficient" lists include products by Crosley, Electrolux, Frigidaire, LG, Panasonic, Rheem, and Samsung, as well as Sears' Kenmore brand and Best Buy's Insignia brand. Later this year, the EPA will initiate a process to consider additional product categories for inclusion in 2012. Consumers can find cited products on the Energy Star website and in stores by looking for the "Most Efficient" designation. In addition to meeting established performance requirements, products must also be Energy Star qualified and certified by an EPA-recognized certification body. Energy Star is a joint program of the EPA and DOE. See the DOE press release and the "Most Efficient" products on the Energy Star website.