A national coalition of distributors and contractors associated with heating, ventilation, air-conditioning and refrigeration (HVACR), including Heating, Airconditioning & Refrigeration Distributors International (HARDI), the Air Conditioning Contractors of America (ACCA), and the Plumbing, Heating, Cooling Contractors (PHCC), praised Senators who blocked advancement of an energy bill that had been passed by the House in early December. The bill allowed for an unprecedented “regionalization” of efficiency standards on residential heating and cooling equipment that the coalition said will lead to higher equipment costs for  consumers and little or no energy savings.

“Regionalizing heating and cooling efficiency standards would eliminate the largest markets for the most affordable equipment, causing immediate cost increases for those states whose standards might not even change at all,” according to Talbot Gee, vice president of HARDI. “Homeowners … will have no choice but to repair and maintain older, less-efficient systems rather than replacing them with high-efficiency systems that they could no longer afford.”

Gee noted that the regionalization strategy does not introduce any equipment that is not already available.