Appliance manufacturers must soon supply customers new parts for repair – and make them cheaper to run
“/>The government hopes this move will reduce CO2 emissions (Photo: Shutterstock)
The government has announced that tough new rules for manufacturers of electrical products will make devices like televisions cheaper to operate and give them a longer lifespan.
New measures aim to put an end to what is known as “premature obsolescence”, whereby manufacturers give products such as washing machines a short lifespan so that customers are forced to buy a new one sooner.
These measures include the statutory obligation of manufacturers to provide customers with spare parts in order to extend the product lifespan by up to 10 years.
The government hopes this will pass savings on to customers while reducing the carbon emissions associated with manufacturing new products.
In addition, new, higher energy efficiency standards are being set for electrical appliances, with consumers saving both CO2 emissions and bills. According to official figures, the savings should average £ 75 per year.
Simplified energy labels based on an A to G scale are also introduced.
The new rules apply to white goods such as dishwashers, refrigerators, washing machines and televisions and will come into effect this summer. The government hopes this move will reduce the 1.5 million tonnes of e-waste produced annually by the UK.
Economy and Energy Minister Kwasi Kwarteng said: “Our plans to tighten product standards will ensure that more of our electrical appliances can be repaired instead of being thrown away in the scrap heap. This will put more money in consumers’ pockets while protecting the environment.” .
“Going forward, our upcoming energy efficiency framework will result in electrical products using even less energy and materials, saving people money on their bills and reducing carbon emissions as we work towards zero by 2050.”
The Chairman of the Environmental Review Committee, Conservative MP Philip Dunne, welcomed the new approach to tackling the “e-waste tsunami”.
“There should be no competition: consumers should have the right to repair their own items,” he said.
“The provision of spare parts is the first step in creating a circular economy in which we use, reuse and recycle products. We have to stop using and throwing away so much: we have to take action to protect the environment for generations to come. “