GOP bill would repeal all efficiency standards

A House Republican is pushing legislation that would repeal every energy efficiency standard the federal government has established for consumer goods.

Rep. Michael BurgessMichael BurgessGOP: Obama ‘in denial’ about healthcare law failures Commerce, Manufacturing and Trade Subcommittee pursues an active agenda Lawmakers press concerns over fuel efficiency rules MORE (R-Texas) says the regulations, frequently set by the Energy Department, are often unworkable and limit market-driven efficiency improvements.

“The federal government must trust the American people to make the right decisions when it comes to the products they buy. When the government sets the efficiency standard for a product, that often becomes the ceiling,” Burgess said in a statement.

He added that while he is a firm believer in energy efficiency, “when the market drives the standard, there’s no limit to how fast and how aggressive manufacturers will be when consumers demand more efficient and better made products.”

The bill would repeal a section of the Energy Policy and Conservation Act that gives the Energy Department authority to regulate efficiency for lightbulbs, furnaces, ceiling fans, heating and air conditioning systems, clothes washers and more.

Burgess has successfully sponsored an amendment in recent years that’s prohibited the Energy Department from banning the sale of incandescent lightbulbs, in favor of more efficient ones.

“Government standards have proven to be unworkable,” said in his statement.

“The Commerce Clause of the U.S. Constitution was meant as a limitation on federal power. It was never intended to allow the federal government to micromanage everyday consumer products that do not pose a risk to human health or safety.”