Evolution of Energy Efficiency Programs Over Time: The Case of Standby Power

Publication Type

Conference Paper

Date Published




Issued in 2001, Presidential Executive Order 13221 directed federal agencies to purchase products with low standby power, with the goal of 1) reducing energy consumption in federal facilities, and 2) drawing attention to the problem of high standby power consumption, with guidance provided by the Federal Energy Management Program (FEMP). At that time, standby power was newly recognized as an increasing building energy load. Since then, procurement of products with low standby power have been set in place in acquisition processes, and the purchasing power of the federal government continues to influence manufacturers' design decisions related to standby power. In recent years, FEMP has shifted effort from direct manufacturer outreach for data collection, to integrating low standby requirement into broader acquisition programs including Energy Star and Electronic Product Environmental Assessment Tool (EPEAT). Another milestone has been the labeling of low standby products on the GSA Advantage website to simplify and enhance compliance. Looking forward into the program's future, this question arises "How do we design programs over time to reflect market and technology changes, by adjusting programmatic requirements while maintaining effectiveness?" This paper discusses that question for the case of standby power, which transitioned from covering a single to multiple environmental attributes, both in the context of the program's past and future.


2014 ACEEE Summer Study on Energy Efficiency in Buildings

Year of Publication



Research Areas

Related Files