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Last Updated December 5, 2014

Program Overview


Regulatory Policy


Rhode Island

Incentive Type:

Appliance/Equipment Efficiency Standards



Start Date:


Expiration Date:


Web Site:


Applicable Sectors:


Eligible Renewable/Other Technologies:



NOTE: The federal government has imposed and updated appliance efficiency standards through several legislative acts,* and now has standards in place or under development for 30 classes of products. In general, states which had set standards prior to federal action may enforce their own standards until the federal standards take effect. States that had not set standards prior to federal action must use the federal standards. This summary addresses (1) state appliance standards that will be in place until the federal standards take effect and (2) products for which the federal government is not currently developing an efficiency standard. Much of the information in this summary comes from the Appliance Standards Awareness Project (ASAP). Visit the ASAP web site and the U.S. Department of Energy's Appliance and Equipment Standards site for comprehensive information about appliance standards.
Rhode Island’s Energy and Consumer Savings Act of 2005 established minimum energy efficiency standards for twelve commercial and residential products, nine of which were immediately preempted by federal law later that year, and another of which was preempted later. Thus far, Rhode Island has adopted and enforces standards for bottle-type water dispensers, mercury vapor lamp ballasts and commercial hot-food holding cabinets.

Testing procedures for energy efficiency not provided for in Rhode Island law or in the State Building Code may be adopted from the test methods approved by the U.S. Department of Energy, or in the absence of such test methods, other appropriate nationally recognized test methods. The state may use updated test methods when new versions of test procedures become available. State law allows for the efficiency of existing standards to be increased. In considering amending the standards, the state must must determine that increased efficiency standards would serve to promote energy conservation in Rhode Island and would be cost-effective for consumers who purchase and use such products.

* These acts include the National Appliance Energy Conservation Act of 1987, the Energy Policy Act of 1992, the Energy Policy Act of 2005, and the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007.