Fraud: Energy Star Efficiency Compliance
Home Energy magazine wrote about manufacturers overstating product capacity and governments doing flawed efficiency tests and issuing misleading "green" recommendations:
"An insidious, new form of noncompliance has recently emerged. Thanks to microprocessor controls, some appliances now recognize when they are being tested and switch into a low-energy mode. According to Consumer Reports, this appears to be the case with a new LG refrigerator, which inexplicably switches off some operations when the ambient temperature approaches the testing temperature and when doors haven’t been opened for a while. These measures cut enough electricity use to qualify the unit for Energy Star endorsement and sales-enhancing utility rebate programs. LG appears to be failing to comply with energy regulations in two countries. (Is anybody paying attention?) But LG is not alone; Japanese refrigerator manufacturers became so adept at circumventing the test that actual electricity use of refrigerators was typically twice as high as the labels claimed. The situation became so embarrassing that the government changed the test procedure to make it harder to circumvent. Many U.S. appliance manufacturers (and importers) are poised to adopt the same approach as LG and Japanese manufacturers. The FTC, DOE, and Energy Star should be on the alert."