Electrolux calls for political support for faster replacement of energy inefficient appliances

18 million tons of carbon dioxide emission would be saved if 188 million old and energy thirsty household appliances would be replaced by energy efficient models

Electrolux calls on policymakers to encourage adoption of energy-efficient technology. With the right consumer incentives in place, the appliance industry can make a significant contribution to achieving the EU’s 20/20 climate change goals.

Appliances are present in every home in Europe; and one in every three of them is over a decade old. This corresponds to 188 million of the 630 million appliances. Upgrading these old, energy thirsty products with the highest efficiency models represents a significant CO2 savings potential. In fact, if every household replaces its ten year appliances with today’s most efficient models, Europe would cut its carbon dioxide emissions by 18 million tons. This corresponds to 6 percent of the EU’s objectives as defined in the Kyoto Protocol.

“Our industry has made great strides toward reducing energy and water consumption in household appliances, and that’s something we’re proud of. Now we want the support of political incentives to stimulate faster the replacement of old and energy inefficient appliances with new and efficient ones. Replacement would significantly reduce households’ carbon dioxide emissions”, says Electrolux President and CEO Hans Stråberg.

Every new generation of appliances Electrolux puts on the market is more energy efficient than the previous one. Electrolux develops state of-the-art appliances which are widely available, but not yet widely adopted by consumers. At the same time, governments have a source of CO2 and energy reduction that is not being effectively tapped into. At the current rate of replacing old appliances with new ones, it is estimated that it will take between ten and twenty years to achieve full environmental return on energy efficient appliances.

Today, Electrolux outlines how Europe’s highly ambitious energy targets can be achieved through a faster, more stable and effective approach by stimulating the market.

Consumers seek guidance
Awareness of the implications of climate change is raising consumers’ expectations on governments and companies to take action. Electrolux has an important role to play. Today’s appliances consume on average 50 % less energy than those sold ten years ago. Potential CO2 reductions are not being achieved because inefficient appliances are not being replaced with energy-lean models at a fast enough rate.

Triggering change
Electrolux supports market incentives that trigger change in consumer purchasing. It is the most effective way of achieving immediate reductions in household-generated carbon dioxide. Upgrading to the most efficient models can make both economic and environmental sense. Examples from Spain and Italy demonstrate their value.

In the first half year in 2007 in Italy, sales of the most energy efficient models (A+ and A++ rated) have more than doubled on 2006 sales records. If these measures were to be prolonged to nine years, this is estimated to produce the equivalent savings of 9 million tons of CO2 for the entire period. In Spain, meanwhile, the one-year ‘Plan Renove’ program will be extended to 2012. Going forward it will cover other household appliances as well as refrigerators. Both examples illustrate that the cost of such a program is balanced by the socio-economic and environmental gains it generates.

If an average German family replaced its 10-year-old refrigerator, freezer, washing machine and dishwasher with the most updated models, it would save 85 € in electricity and water costs in one year. Moreover, they would reduce energy consumption by about 370 kWh which corresponds to 325 kilograms CO2 emissions and more than 4,000 liters of water.

At Electrolux, we maintain that incentive programs have a role to play if widely-applied and given a sufficient length of time to induce a permanent change in consumer behavior.

We are also committed to continuously improving processes to cut energy use in our own operations. Electrolux has set a target to cut energy use 15 % Group-wide by year-end 2009. The three-year target equates to a CO2 reduction of 100,000 tons. This is equivalent to the carbon dioxide emitted by 22,500 cars.

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For further information contact Electrolux Media Hotline on +46 8 657 65 07 or press@electrolux.com