Brammer urges UK industry to act now in light of European motor legislation

Brammer, the UK’s leading supplier of maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO) products and services, has urged UK industry to act now and take early advantage of the opportunities for greater energy efficiency that will result from the introduction of the European Union EcoDesign Requirements for Energy-Using Products Directive.

The first phase of the EU MEPS Directive (2009) begins implementation from June 2011. The legislation stipulates that all two-, four- and six-pole single speed three-phase AC motors from 0.75 – 375kW, manufactured from June 2011, must meet a minimum efficiency of IE2, previously known as EFF1. Products below this energy efficiency standard – categorised as IE1 (formerly EFF2) – cannot be manufactured for sale in the UK and Europe from 16th June 2011.

The legislation is intended to help reduce the energy consumption and carbon emissions attributable to UK and European industry. In the UK, the government has estimated this legislation will help save industry around £200m per annum and reduce CO2 emissions by around one million tonnes per year.

However, Brammer believes that where a motor needs to be replaced or an investment made in new equipment it makes sound business sense to purchase an energy-efficient motor even before the EU MEPS comes into force. This will enable companies to immediately benefit from greater energy efficiency, carbon emission reductions and the potential for improved productivity and reliability.

Jeremy Salisbury, head of marketing at Brammer, explained: “Accounting for around two thirds of electricity consumption in UK manufacturing, motors clearly represent an area where significant savings can be made if the most energy-efficient products are specified.

“The Directive simply legislates what is actually best practice in motor management – specifying the most energy-efficient product, of the correct size and duty, for the job.

“The cost of changing from an EFF3 or EFF2 motor to an IE2 product will, in most cases, be more than outweighed by the savings achievable through improved energy efficiency and reduced carbon emissions - particularly if companies take advantage of the financial support available for investment in energy efficient technology through schemes such as the Enhanced Capital Allowance and, for SMEs, the Carbon Trust loan scheme.”

The Directive is being introduced in three phases. In the second phase, which comes into force on 1st January 2015, motors rated from 7.5 to 375kW will either have to achieve the higher IE3 efficiency level, or meet the IE2 level and be fitted with a variable speed drive. From 2017, these rules will be extended to cover motors as small as 0.75kW.

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