By Patrick Avenell

ADELAIDE, SA & SYDNEY, NSW: The South Australian Government has announced the strictest air conditioner energy efficiency laws in the country, with non-compliant stock set to be made unsellable from 1 July 2010.

Under the new regulations released last Friday, from 1 July 2010, air conditioners not meeting the new regulations cannot be sold into South Australian retailers. Retailers will have until 1 July 2010 to clear existing stock. After this date, the stock that does not meet the new conditions will be rendered obsolete.

The new energy standards are not only more stringent than the national standard, but also the Queensland requirements, which were described as bring roguish when first reported in May 2009. Those changes have had a serious detrimental effect on some manufacturers, with pre-ordered stock having to be redirected to other states at the supplier’s expense.

Under the new standards, the following types of air conditioners must have an energy efficiency rating (EER) of less than 2.9: Non-ducted unitary up to 19 kilowatts, ducted systems up to 19 kilowatts and all configurations between 39 kilowatts and 65 kilowatts.

All non-ducted split systems between 4 kilowatts and 19 kilowatts must have an EER of 3.0. At 3.1 are all configurations between 19 kilowatts and 39 kilowatts and at 3.4 are non-ducted split systems up to 4 kilowatts.

“This South Australian Government initiative will reduce the amount of energy consumed by air conditioners. Highly efficient air conditioners require less electricity to cool an area in your home or workplace as compared to an inefficient air conditioner.

“This is particularly beneficial on hot days where the high demand for electricity is strongly linked to air conditioner usage. A lower energy requirement for powering air conditioners will reduce the costs of supplying electricity and lower greenhouse gas emissions,” said a South Australian Government spokesperson.