The Rudd government today released its new plan to help householders save energy and money while reducing greenhouse gas emissions.
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The scheme at first will be voluntary with the new measures including:
· a new television labelling scheme to enable consumers to identify the most energy efficient sets at point of sale;
· a new guide to help householders and in particular renovators identify ways to incorporate energy saving measures into their homes;
· the accelerated phase-out of traditional incandescent light bulbs
“The announcement coincides with the release of a new report on household energy usage which forecasts an increase in energy usage of 56 per cent by 2020, emphasising the need for immediate, comprehensive and coordinated action on energy efficiency.
According to a media spokesperson for Environment Minister Peter Garrett, the household sector is forecast to grow by almost 4 million homes and over 1,000 million square kilometres in combined floor space by 2020, creating increased demand for heating, cooling, lighting and electrical appliances.
“This report estimates that one in four Australians buys a new television each year and that TVs are now the fourth-largest user of electricity, behind water heating, domestic refrigeration and lighting”, said the spokesperson.
Furthermore, although the government has no figures to back up the amount of greenhouse gases that would be saved by this new ratings system, he said that if “when the use of incandescent is phased out and replaced by fluorescent globes, it will equal taking 1 million cars off our roads”.
The spokesperson noted that the scheme will eventually become “mandatory after 2009 and will be policed by the state governments”.