PORTLAND— Environment Maine joined environmental and consumer allies to call on the Maine legislature to adopt appliance efficiency standards on 18 products, including commercial dishwashers, commercial fryers, water coolers and faucets. The new standards could reduce climate-altering carbon dioxide pollution, smog-forming emissions and save water resources.
Adopting the recommended standards in Maine would annually prevent 30 thousand metric tons of climate-altering carbon dioxide from entering the atmosphere -- the equivalent of taking 6,521 cars off of the road each year. The standards would also prevent pollution from nitrogen oxides (smog-causing pollution) and sulfur dioxide (a fine particulate pollution).
“Appliance efficiency standards are a sensible and significant way to improve the health of both people and the planet,” said Allie Astor, Clean Water Associate, Environment America. “Applying these common sense measures will take a big bite out of pollution by reducing the amount of unnecessary energy wasted by common products.”
These standards would result in annual savings of approximately 77 gigawatts of electricity in Maine by 2025, according to the Appliance Standards Awareness Project, a national organization working to advance, win and defend new efficiency standards for appliances, equipment and lighting. That’s enough to power about 7,404 typical households, according to Environment Maine calculations.
Annual water savings are estimated to be 642 million gallons by 2025, enough to meet the annual water consumption needs of 5,863 average U.S. households. In addition, by 2025 this measure will save Maine consumers $25 million dollars annually.
“Appliance Energy Standards are an easy, cost efficient way to save ourselves money on our electricity bill, while also doing our part to slow the degradation of the environment upon which so many of our jobs depend, whether they be in the woods, fields, or waters,” said Representative Bill Pluecker (District 95), who filed the appliance efficiency bill in January.
"These standards ensure that the appliances we use every day work they way Maine people want them to -- efficiently and economically," said Kathleen Meil, Director of Policy & Partnerships for Maine Conservation Voters. "Efficiency is the cheapest energy resource we have, and with climate action topping the priority list for Maine voters and policymakers, the time is right for Maine to adopt energy-saving, consumer-friendly appliance standards."