By: Stephen Yurek, President & CEO, AHRI
May 23, 2017 | Arlington, Va.
Contact: Francis Dietz, Vice President, Public Affairs
As the funding process for FY 2018 begins with the submission of the President’s budget, AHRI and its 315 member manufacturers look forward to working with Congress to arrive at funding levels that allow federal agencies to operate effectively. AHRI will continue to share its perspective with the administration and Congress to ensure that vital programs for the HVACR and water heater industry are appropriately funded. These include the DOE Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy, which is responsible for establishing and maintaining federal energy efficiency standards; the Energy Star program at the EPA; and Montreal Protocol activities at both the Department of State and the EPA. These programs are priorities for the industry and have historically garnered significant bipartisan support in Congress.
The Energy Star program has proven to be a successful tool in advancing the development and use of energy efficient technologies. The program has also promoted economic expansion and job growth for participating manufacturers across the nation. To maintain the program’s success, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) relies on third-party voluntary independent verification programs (VIVPs) –including AHRI’s Performance Certification Program – to validate manufacturers’ efficiency claims. These VIVPs save businesses time and money, while ensuring a robust Energy Star program and safeguarding consumer protection.
Energy Star encourages companies to push the envelope with respect to energy efficiency. The program provides an easy way for consumers to identify the most efficient products on the market, and AHRI believes that provides enough value to justify its continuation.
DOE Energy Efficiency Budget
AHRI members’ products are regulated by the Department of Energy (DOE). Though in need of significant reform, the 40-year-old Energy Policy and Conservation Act (EPCA), the law underpinning the federal energy efficiency standards program, provides predictability for manufacturers by establishing one national standard versus many different state or municipal standards. The predictability provided by federal preemption along with a commitment to energy efficiency were key factors in the HVACR industry’s original support for the law back in 1975.
While AHRI supports reforming the regulatory process by updating EPCA, DOE is nonetheless legally obligated to conduct rulemakings on a Congressionally mandated schedule, which requires adequate funding to complete. America’s HVACR and water heating manufacturers depend on a predictable federal efficiency standards schedule.
AHRI supports adequate funding for the DOE Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy and intends to work with DOE to accomplish its statutory goals even as it also works with the administration and Congress to accomplish needed reforms to EPCA.
The Air-Conditioning, Heating, and Refrigeration Institute (AHRI) is the trade association representing manufacturers of air conditioning, heating, and commercial refrigeration, and water heating equipment. An internationally recognized advocate for the industry, AHRI develops standards for and certifies the performance of many of these products. AHRI's 300+ member companies manufacture quality, efficient, and innovative residential and commercial air conditioning, space heating, water heating, and commercial refrigeration equipment and components for sale in North America and around the world.