NAFEM has a “seat at the table” as DOE creates energy efficiency standards

It’s clear from everything going on in the foodservice equipment industry that energy-efficiency standards are not only here to stay, they continue to increase. Fortunately, DOE is receptive to industry input, so much so that it created the Appliance Standards and Rulemaking Federal Advisory Committee (ASRAC) to “improve the Agency’s process for establishing energy-efficient standards for certain appliances and commercial equipment.” NAFEM has a seat on ASRAC that has been held for nearly four years by Charlie Hon, manager, sustainability and government affairs, True Manufacturing.

“The 12 ASRAC appointees serve as an advisory committee to the Secretary of Energy,” said Charlie. “We use our significant experience to help negotiate energy efficiency rules. The Committee process is important because it supports far more in-depth conversations and analysis than the comment process alone.”

During his two terms on the committee, Charlie has helped negotiate rulemaking for heating and air conditioning systems, commercial refrigeration systems, walk-in coolers, as well as the automated commercial icemaker standards that now apply to NAFEM members. “It’s our job to help the Secretary and DOE team understand how potential rules will impact our categories, and especially to bring forth unforeseen consequences of regulations being considered,” he said. “We are the experts in our industry and DOE wants to hear from us.”

ASRAC is responsible for advising on energy efficiency standards in 25 residential, 25 commercial, 15 lighting and 5 plumbing categories – 70 product categories overall. Candidates for consideration by DOE for the 12 ASRAC seats must have significant prior experience working with the Agency, knowledge of how to produce energy efficiency products, and the ability to attend regular meetings in Washington, D.C.

“It’s very important that NAFEM has a seat at this table. We must protect our businesses by being heavily involved in the rule-making process.”

Charlie’s second and final ASRAC term concludes this year. NAFEM will need to present a new slate of candidates for consideration to DOE, which carefully evaluates those suggested for their prior experience working with DOE, knowledge of how to produce energy efficient products and ability to regularly be in Washington, D.C., for meetings. Members interested in serving on ASRAC should contact Charlie Souhrada, CFSPNAFEM’s vice president, regulatory & technical or +1.312.821.0201.