India Raises the Bar on Ceiling Fan Energy Efficiency

India’s national nodal agency for energy conservation, the Bureau of Energy Efficiency, announced a revised policy on ceiling fans, effective from 1 August 2019.

Ceiling fans are among the fastest and largest selling appliances. With 40 million units sold every year, ceiling fans consume about 20% of the electricity in Indian households.

The revised policy is expected to result in tremendous electricity cuts of 35.9 BU, equivalent to 29 Mt CO2 emissions reduction by 2030. It also represents a momentous step in addressing the immediate recommendation of the India Cooling Action Plan (ICAP), a recently announced 20-year vision document aimed at meeting the country’s growing cooling needs in a climate-friendly manner.

Additionally, the revised policy rescales the energy performance thresholds fivefold – the existing 5-star (highest) level becomes the new 1-star minimum. BEE expanded the policy’s scope to include ceiling fans of other varying sizes. The policy will transition from its current voluntary status to a mandatory regulation on July 1, 2020.

CLASP provided support to BEE in carrying out a market assessment and analysis of production data to assess the relative penetration of ceiling fans based on their star labelling levels. It was found that almost 99% of ceiling fans registered with BEE under the voluntary program were in the 5-star category.

Through a process of consultations and deliberations at the technical committee meetings with all the stakeholders – manufacturers, test labs, Bureau of Indian Standard (BIS), and civil society – the decision was made to upgrade the energy consumption parameters and revise the policy.

This long overdue revision had a few critical challenges to be addressed, some of which included defining the service value at various efficiency levels and testing calculations. CLASP played a significant role in revising the national standard and test method that helped resolve the issues. This was done through CLASP’s senior technical advisor, Mr P.K. Mukherjee, who convened the panel at BIS to work on defining the values.


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