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Efficiency Standards - They're Baaaaaack

November 16, 2009
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Steve Yurek, president of Air-Conditioning, Heating, and Refrigeration Institute (AHRI), received an interesting introduction from Tom Roberts, chair of the HVAC Council at the Heating, Airconditioning and Refrigeration Distributors International (HARDI) organization, as Yurek was about to defend a somewhat unpopular recent AHRI action regarding regional energy-efficiency standards. The two organizations can’t agree upon how to spell Air Conditioning (The NEWS’ preferred style), so it should not be any great surprise they will not always agree.

HARDI opposed the action by AHRI because climate borders are not the same as trade borders. The degree day line by which the country is divided causes a number of HARDI members to trade across that line because of their multiple branches or service areas. Enforcement of these border issues with regard to regional efficiencies was also a big sticking point.

Yurek admirably defined the issues facing the industry with regard to certain Department of Energy intervention. The parties agreed at the meeting to disagree and yet acknowledged the necessity for AHRI to have acted decisively, as they did. The differences were aptly stated by Roberts, who said, “AHRI viewed regional standards as an energy issue, while HARDI viewed energy standards as a regional issue.” In the end, everyone remained friends.

Perhaps it was all just a different way of describing an elephant, but the fly in the ointment is still the fact that the language of the energy-efficiency standards does not provide for installation guidelines.
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