WASHINGTON - The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) announced that it has taken action against Air-Con International, requiring the company to stop selling certain air conditioning systems in the United States that have been shown to violate federal energy efficiency appliance standards. DOE stated that it is proposing a civil penalty of more than $230,000 for importing and distributing these non-compliant cooling products.
In March 2010, DOE issued a subpoena requiring Air-Con to submit detailed information about the energy consumption of its products and how the company marketed and sold them in the United States. Based on Air-Con’s responses to the subpoena, DOE said it found that the company imported and distributed nearly 2,000 air conditioning units that are rated at 10 SEER, while the federal standard requires a minimum 13 SEER rating. The following two air conditioning unit models are covered by the announcement: ACN-09/12/18/24-GCH and ACN-MTS-09CO/12CO/09EV/12EV.
The DOE notice proposes the maximum penalty for selling non-compliant products and requires Air-Con to immediately cease further U.S. sales and provide written notification to its customers that purchased these units. Air-Con is also required to update the information it has provided to the Department, including a record of the company’s U.S. sales since it last responded to DOE. If Air-Con fails to cease distribution of these models in the United States, DOE said it will seek a judicial order to prevent further sales.