How Do I Get Involved?
The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) encourages the participation of all interested parties at all stages of the rulemaking process. Early and frequent interactions among manufacturers, efficiency/environmental advocates, states, utilities, retailers, and consumers provide a balanced discussion on potential standards levels and critical information required to conduct the analysis.
In 1995, DOE started a comprehensive effort to improve the standards rulemaking process. Through a series of stakeholder meetings and interviews, DOE examined issues surrounding the appliance standards program. The findings from these meetings and interviews helped DOE improve the rulemaking process. DOE published a rule outlining the procedural and analytical changes for the appliance standards process in July 1996.
The rule establishes procedures, interpretations, and policies to guide DOE in developing new or revised appliance efficiency standards under the Energy Policy and Conservation Act.
The rule outlines methods to ensure:
- Early involvement of stakeholders
- Increased predictability of the rulemaking timetable
- Increased use of industry expertise
- Early elimination of impractical or problematic design options
- Enhanced analysis of impacts
- Improved analytical methods
- Support of consensus rulemaking.
DOE is also exploring the relationship between market-pull approaches and standards by examining multiple paths to reach the same energy conservation goal. Among other factors, DOE wants to find alternatives that maximize consumer benefits and minimize negative impacts on manufacturers and others.