ASEAN SHINE’s Cost Savings Calculator lets shoppers choose more efficient AC units

The hot tropical climate is driving air-conditioning sales in Metro Manila, with one out of five households having purchased an AC unit in the last two years according to German-based market research firm GfK.

Similar trends are seen in neighboring countries. A joint 2015 study by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and the ASEAN Standard Harmonization Initiative for Energy Efficiency (ASEAN SHINE) revealed that air-conditioning accounted for almost half of the total residential and commercial power demand in Southeast Asia.

“Increased energy consumption translates to higher carbon emissions,” said Engr. Arthur A. Lopez, ASEAN SHINE Country Coordinator for the Philippines. “While air-conditioning has become indispensible to our comfort and productivity in the Philippines, we need better ways to meet our needs so we can reduce our environmental impact.”

As part of its efforts to aid governments in building a regional policy roadmap on energy performance standards for air conditioners, ASEAN SHINE has developed a Cost Savings Calculator that can assist consumers in choosing the best energy-saving AC unit for their needs.

More savings at less energy

The Cost Savings Calculator is a mobile app that enables retail salespersons to compare two AC models by calculating total ownership costs including purchase price and yearly electricity costs. The results demonstrate how more energy-efficient air conditioners can provide consumers with greater economic benefits.

“A five-star air conditioner might seem more expensive at first, but the long-term savings compared with that of a three-star unit only show that higher efficiency models help you cut down your expenses over several years,” Engr. Lopez said.

“Air conditioner manufacturers can see this as an opportunity to innovate more efficient units, ultimately helping the country reduce its carbon footprint,” he added.

Through the UNEP and the International Copper Association (ICA), ASEAN SHINE has also received a grant from the European Union (EU) to promote higher efficiency AC units by harmonizing test methods and energy efficiency standards across the ASEAN region. Many member states have already agreed to a uniform testing method based on ISO 5151-2010, which is the standard applied to non-ducted air conditioners and heat pumps.

The ASEAN SHINE Cost Savings Calculator is available via the Apple App Store and Google Play Store.

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