WASHINGTON, DC — Stick a gold star on the metaphorical forehead of the Energy Star® Program. Last year, the energy-conservation program is reported to have saved Americans more than 75 billion kWh of energy.

The program is a government-sponsored joint effort between the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the Department of Energy (DOE), and several private companies.

Kathleen Hogan, director of EPA’s Climate Protection Division, said, “The current focus on high energy costs has demonstrated the importance of nationwide energy efficiency. We are working with more than 5,000 partners, and Energy Star is offering a 30% reduction in energy bills for many.”

Introduced by the EPA in 1992 as a voluntary labeling program that would be used to identify and promote energy-efficient appliances and products, Energy Star was developed in order to reduce carbon dioxide emissions, and has expanded to cover more than just appliances.

The program is well known throughout the contracting industry because it has begun to cover most of the buildings sector, residential heating and cooling equipment, office equipment, lighting, and consumer electronics.

Since its actual inception six years ago, the program claims to have reduced total U.S. energy needs by more than 200 billion kWh. According to the EPA, if all consumers, businesses, and organizations in the United States made their product choices and building improvements based on Energy Star standards over the next decade, the national annual energy bill would be reduced by about another $200 billion.

For more information, visit www.energystar.gov (website).

Publication date: 03/26/2001