New EU energy labels

Background

In recent years, the market for domestic-scale appliances has seen excellent progress, with increasingly energy-efficient products becoming widely available. Consequently, the A-rated category was extended over time to include A+, A++, and A+++ ratings. Meanwhile, the lower ratings, such as E, F and G have become increasingly rare. It was clear that an adjustment to a new, simpler set of ratings was required.

Statutory Changes

From 1st March 2021, the European Commission requires new, updated energy labels of A to G for dishwashers, washing machines, fridges and electronic displays.

Lamps will require the new ratings from 1st September 2021 and requirements for re-labelling tumble dryers are yet to be confirmed.

This means:

  • A+ to A+++ will transition mainly to C through to F
  • A and B will initially apply to very few products
  • G ratings will be phased out, with F ratings to follow

Changes for BREEAM and HQM

As a result of the introduction of the new EU ratings and in order to maintain the original intent of the BREEAM criteria, the approach for our schemes has had to change.

It is not possible to establish direct equivalence between the old and new energy labels, therefore the updated approach will be to recognise the best-performing 25% of each appliance type, based on a comprehensive market sample. The table below shows how this translates into the new EU Energy Labels for different appliance types.

Appliance type

Rating required

Fridges, fridge-freezers
E
Washing machines
B
Dishwashers
D
Washer-dryers
D

 

This approach will ensure that BREEAM continues to drive the energy efficiency of appliances by demonstrating a meaningful reduction in energy consumption. Note that these new requirements will be reviewed from time to time and may be subject to change.

Where assessments have already specified (and can procure) products bearing the old labels, it is acceptable to follow the previous criteria. However, where products bear the new label and for all assessments registered after 31/05/2021, the new criteria must be met.

 

12 May 2021 - Guidance updated and applicability to HQM One and BREEAM NOR confirmed.