The Ecodesign Directive

Sustainable industrial policy aims in particular at developing a policy to foster environmental and energy efficient products in the internal market. The Ecodesign Directive 2009/125/EC is the cornerstone of this approach. It establishes a framework for the setting of ecodesign requirements for energy-related products with the aim of ensuring the free movement of those products within the internal market. Directive 2009/125/EC repealed the original Directive 2005/32/EC for the setting of ecodesign requirements for energy-using products. It prevents disparate national legislations on the environmental performance of these products from becoming obstacles to the intra-EU trade and contributes to sustainable development by increasing energy efficiency and the level of protection of the environment, taking into account the whole life cycle cost.

The Ecodesign directive itself does not set binding requirements on products: it provides a framework (rules and criteria) for setting such requirements through implementing measures. It is also possible to introduce information requirements for components and sub-assemblies. The Commission prepares implementing measures only for products which have significant sales and trade in the EU, a significant environmental impact and potential for improvement. Product groups are identified following the procedure described in Article 16.

The Preparatory Study

This study aims at building further on the results from the preparatory study for the Ecodesign working plan 2016-2019 and will also cover the residential building environment. Furthermore, this study also seeks to complement the on-going/recent studies addressing the development of a smart readiness indicator for buildings and smart appliances under the Ecodesign Directive respectively.
BACS are electronic appliances that manage and control the operation of most technical building services such as heat generation, hot water systems, ventilation, cooling and air conditioning, lighting, communication systems, lifts, etc.
BACS cover a wide range of heterogeneous products for which the significant energy saving potential is due to their interaction with other products/systems. The preparatory study for the 2016-2019 Ecodesign working plan identified that the main energy savings for BACS are not achieved in reducing the standalone energy consumption of the BACS themselves, but are driven by the coordination of several controlled products with BACS e.g. preventing heating and cooling in the same zone at the same time.

The primary aim of the scoping study was to define the product scope, to identify the focus areas & direction to take for the subsequent preparatory study and ultimately determine and draft out policy options in light with the Ecodesign Directive. Therefore the initial scope of this study will include the following:

  1. define the product group(s) and system boundaries with options for scoping a full preparatory study;
  2. screen the products considering the environmental impacts and potential improvement as referred to in Art. 15 of the Ecodesign Directive, but also considering any systematic differences in application areas, e.g. residential vs non-residential;
  3. identify the areas where the MEErP might need deviations, including producing proposals for alternative approaches that follow the MEErP as closely as possible, e.g. how & where the MEErP needs to be adapted for this product group;
  4. deliver an overview of suitable policy options in light of the Ecodesign Directive, but also in view of the complementarity with the work on the EPBD, smartness indicator and smart appliances (i.e. demand side flexibility from BACS).

Afterwards, based on the scoping, one or more full preparatory studies on BACS will be started following the MEErP methodology in the extend possible.

For more information on the Ecodesign Directive 2009/125/EC and related activities, please visit the Links page.