By Patrick Avenell

SYDNEY, NSW: The New South Wales State Government has changed the washing machine rebate rules, meaning that consumer will only receive $150 cash back if they purchase a 5-star machine. The previous minimum standard was 4.5 stars.

According the Sydney Water, the organisation that administers the rebate, washing machines are third highest consumer of water in the house. In order to encourage consumers to purchase more hydro-conscious machines, it offers a $150 rebate to consumers who purchase a 5-star machine between today (15 January 2010) and 30 June 2010. This machine must be connected a Sydney Water main and be for residential use only.

Consumers who purchased a 4.5-star machine up to 14 January 2010 must lodge their rebate application before 30 April 2010.

Julie Hinds, a project officer at Water Conservation and Recycling, wrote to retail groups today alerting them of this change. In her letter, she attributed the change in policy to the State Minister for Climate Change and the Environment, Mr Frank Sartor. In her letter, Hinds asks the retail groups to “inform all of [their] stores immediately”.

For more information, visit the Sydney Water website.