The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Department of Energy (DOE) have named both Whirlpool Corporation (Benton Harbor, MI, U.S.) and GE Consumer & Industrial lighting and appliances divisions (Louisville, KY, U.S.) an ENERGY STAR Partner of the Year.
The two government agencies awarded Whirlpool for "its contribution to reducing greenhouse gas emissions with its energy-efficient products," and GE Consumer & Industrial for its "contributions to environmental protection and energy efficiency in the manufacture of high-efficiency household appliances and lighting products," according to written statements from the appliance makers.
The Partner of the Year Award is given to manufacturers and retailers that successfully promote and deliver ENERGY STAR qualified products, saving consumers money and reducing greenhouse gas emissions. Award winners are selected from thousands of organizations that participate in the ENERGY STAR program. Whirlpool and GE will be recognized for their accomplishments at an awards ceremony in Washington, D.C., U.S. on March 2.
GE has worked closely with DOE officials to develop new and revised ENERGY STAR product categories and has advocated adopting more stringent specification levels and implementation schedules, according to the company. GE says it has also aggressively supported the ENERGY STAR program through broad consumer and customer education and has participated in national and regional events promoting ENERGY STAR products to consumers, dealers, and homebuilders.
In 2003, GE invested more than U.S. $26 million and says it now offers more than 420 appliance and 163 lighting products that are ENERGY STAR-qualified.
Whirlpool has been a partner in the conservation program since 1998, and this is its the fifth Partner of the Year award. The company's efforts in revising dishwasher test procedures were cited among reasons for this year's designation.
"We succeed as a company by being able to offer our customers a broad range of appliances under a number of brands, many of which are ENERGY STAR qualified," David L. Swift, Whirlpool's executive vice president for North America, said in a written statement. "These appliances save money for our customers by lowering their utility bills and help protect the environment. ENERGY STAR is a win-win."
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