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Amendments to the Energy Efficiency Regulations, 2016

This regulatory initiative is part of the 2024-2026 Forward Regulatory Plan.

Enabling Acts

Description

The Government of Canada is committed to improving energy efficiency standards for residential commercial, and industrial products to support the Government’s climate change and energy efficiency goals and to reducing regulatory burden through harmonization with the United States, provinces, and territories when possible and appropriate. Improving energy efficiency standards and reducing regulatory burden provides both economic and environmental benefits to Canada.

Implemented in 1995, under the Energy Efficiency Act, the Energy Efficiency Regulations are amended regularly to add or update energy efficiency standards, testing standards, or labelling requirements for energy-using products.

Planned Amendments to the Energy Efficiency Regulations

Between 2024 and 2026, Natural Resources Canada (NRCan) plans to follow through with Amendment 18 and launch new amendments to the Energy Efficiency Regulations while utilizing regulatory tools to facilitate harmonization with other jurisdictions including new Technical Standards Documents and use of ambulatory incorporation by reference of the U.S. Code of Federal Regulations (C.F.R). Please visit the Regulatory Process webpage for more information on these tools and how NRCan intends to use them.

Based on the changes being considered for each energy-using product, and the authorities available for each tool, products will be included in future standard Governor in Council (GIC) or Ministerial amendments. Please find below the current plan for each pathway, understanding that there may be changes along the way, as the regulatory processes progress.

Please note that many of the products already regulated have one or more requirements that are harmonized with the U.S. Department of Energy appliance and equipment standards and have therefore been listed in section 11.1 of the regulations. NRCan closely monitors the actions taken by the U.S. Once the U.S. finalizes new requirements that were previously harmonised in Canada, NRCan conducts an internal review to determine if it makes sense for Canada to maintain alignment. In most cases, stakeholders can expect alignment to be maintained automatically through existing ambulatory incorporation by reference, through the modification of Technical Standards Documents, or by launching a regulatory process (using Ministerial or GIC amendments).

If NRCan were to consider breaking away from an established policy of harmonization in the future for specific requirements, it would require a GIC amendment and stakeholders would be informed via mailout, bulletins, webinars, and formal consultations through publication in Canada Gazette, Part I.

Amendment 18 (Governor in Council) would:

Update or add energy efficiency and/or testing standards, as described in the technical bulletins released in July 2022, for the following energy-using products:

Updating Currently Regulated Products

  • Room air conditioners
  • Portable air conditioners
  • Central air conditioners (3-phase)
  • Central heat pumps (3-phase)
  • Large air conditioners
  • Large heat pumps
  • Electric water heaters (household)
  • Gas-fired storage water heaters (household)
  • Gas furnaces (commercial)
  • Oil-fired water heaters (household)
  • General service lamps

Adding New Products

  • Air compressors
  • Pool pumps
  • Showerheads
  • Faucets
  • Line-voltage thermostats

Energy-using products with a policy of alignment with the U.S. included in Amendment 18 would use one of the following tools:

  1. Ambulatory incorporation by reference of the U.S. C.F.R. for: Faucets, Showerheads, Air compressors, Large air conditioners, Large heat pumps, Central air conditioners and Central heat pumps.
  2. Incorporate by reference NRCan Technical Standards Documents for: Room air conditioners and General service lighting.

The details (content and format) of Technical Standards Documents will be made available for comment upon publication in Canada Gazette, Part I.

Amendment 19 (Governor in Council) would:

Update or add energy efficiency and/or testing standards, and/or labeling requirements, as described in technical bulletins to be released by July 2024, for the following energy-using products:

Updating Currently Regulated Products

  • Gas furnaces (commercial)Footnote 1
  • Televisions
  • Ground-source heat pumps (including water/brine-to-water)
  • Electric motors
  • Ranges

Adding New Products

  • Air cleaners
  • Gas clothes dryers
  • Oil-fired furnaces (commercial) Footnote 1
  • Computer room air conditioners
  • Pool heaters
  • Pool pump motors
  • Manufactured fenestration products (windows, doors and skylights)*
  • Uninterruptible power supplies (UPS)

*NRCan is considering labeling and reporting requirement for Manufactured fenestration products.

Please note that Amendment 19 is early in the development process and the composition of it could change as NRCan gathers additional information and receives feedback from stakeholders.

The next Ministerial amendment(s) would:

Update specific elements of the regulations to maintain alignment with the U.S. for the following products – this section will be updated as needed when the U.S. completes final rulemakings:

  • Ice-makers (automatic commercial)*
  • Metal halide lamp ballasts*
  • Microwave ovens*
  • Large diameter ceiling fans*
  • Refrigerators**
  • Freezers**
  • Dishwashers**
  • Clothes washers**
  • Clothes dryers**

*NRCan intends to skip Canada Gazette, Part I to publish directly in Canada Gazette, Part II where the proposed changes are administrative in nature, to ensure that harmonization is maintained and to avoid any trade impacts.

**On August 19, 2023, NRCan published a Notice in the Canada Gazette, Part I outlining NRCan’s commitments for these products.

Future policy work which may or may not lead to regulatory actions

NRCan has identified the following products as being of interest and will investigate further by launching market studies and/or pre-consultation to determine if there are economically justifiable energy savings or policy considerations to warrant future actions. This list will include potential new products, products with changes in scope or products where a change of policy is being considered for some requirements.

Currently Regulated Products

  • Commercial gas-fired storage water heaters
  • Commercial gas-fired instantaneous water heaters
  • Electric furnaces (Modular blowers)
  • Recovery ventilators

New Products

  • Commercial food service equipment
  • Heat pump water heaters (household and commercial)
  • Portable electric spas
  • Toilets and urinals
  • Variable refrigerant flow (multi-split) air conditioners
  • Variable refrigerant flow (multi-split) heat pumps

NRCan is continuously assessing the potential impacts of updating energy efficiency standards or adding new products to achieve further energy savings and support the Government’s climate change objectives and its commitments to minimize unnecessary regulatory differences within Canada and North America. Future changes will be considered based on potential energy and greenhouse gas savings, economic savings for consumers and businesses, and alignment opportunities with trading partners. This Forward Regulatory Plan will be updated, and stakeholders will be notified, as new products are identified for consideration or as plans are solidified.

Potential Impacts on Canadians, Including Businesses

For proposed amendments, there may be business impacts on manufacturers, importers, and distributors of these products as the amendments will prevent the importation into Canada or shipment across provinces of regulated products that do not meet prescribed efficiency levels for sale or lease. The “One-for-One” Rule and/or the small business lens may apply. Consumers and businesses are expected to save money by purchasing products that are more efficient.

Regulatory Cooperation Efforts (Domestic and International)

The development of regulatory amendments is guided by and consistent with regulatory cooperation agreements designed to minimize regulatory differences within Canada and North American markets. More details about alignment for specific products are provided in technical bulletins published on our website once an amendment launches.

Consultations

In accordance with the Cabinet Directive on Regulations, stakeholders have multiple opportunities to contribute to the regulatory process. The approximate timing for the next pre-consultation and pre-publication in the Canada Gazette, Part I, is as follows:

  • Spring 2024: pre-publication in the Canada Gazette, Part I for Amendment 18, followed by a 70-day comment period.
  • Spring 2024: pre-consultations on products listed for Amendment 19.

The exact date for final publication of each amendment will depend on the number and nature of comments received during the public comment period. Final publications are typically within a year of their initial public comment period. Products described in these updates and the timing of publication are subject to decision-making authorities under the Energy Efficiency Act.

General consultation practices are the following:

  • Bulletins – distribution is targeted to key industry stakeholders, Indigenous partners, federal and provincial stakeholders, and general interest groups who have signed up for our mailing list
  • Workshops/webinars – stakeholders and partners are invited to discuss regulatory requirements under consideration, review comments and offer additional input, especially where there are significant issues raised that are best addressed multilaterally. Upon request, discussions may be held with interest groups or associations.
  • Comment Period – Federal departments and agencies allow interested groups, individuals, and Canadians to review and comment on proposed regulations published in Part I of the Canada Gazette before they become official. For more on the process please consult the Canada Gazette webpage where comments are to be submitted.
  • We are continuously working to improve our consultation tools, practices and processes – please reach out using the email address below if you have any feedback or suggestions.

Further Information

Departmental Contact

Ben Copp
Senior Director, Demand Policy & Analysis Division
Office of Energy Efficiency, Energy Efficiency and Technology
Natural Resources Canada
580 Booth Street, Ottawa, Ontario K1A 0E4
EEregulations-reglementEE@nrcan-rncan.gc.ca

Please subscribe to our mailing list to receive email updates about the Energy Efficiency Regulations

Date first included in Forward Regulatory Plan

Most of the products listed under Amendment 18 were added to the Forward Regulatory Plan in April 2022, but the page has been updated as plans evolved. New products have been listed in April 2024 in “Amendment 19”, “Future Policy Work” and “Ministerial amendment” sections.

Consult NRCan’s acts and regulations web page for:

  • a list of acts and regulations administered by NRCan
  • further information on NRCan’s implementation of government-wide regulatory management initiatives

Consult the following for links to the Cabinet Directive on Regulation and supporting policies and guidance, and for information on government-wide regulatory initiatives implemented by departments and agencies across the Government of Canada:

To learn about upcoming or ongoing consultations on proposed federal regulations, visit:

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