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Public sector buyers of office equipment will have to apply strict energy efficiency criteria after MEPs passed new procurement rules.

The European Parliament adopted new regulations based on its Energy Star programme on 10 July. Under the new rules, EU institutions and central government authorities in member states will have to apply energy efficiency criteria of the level defined in the Energy Star scheme when purchasing office equipment.

It is the first time the council, the European Parliament and the dommission have agreed that certain green standards should become legally binding in public procurement.

The Energy Star programme is part of the EU's strategy to improve the management of energy demand, help secure energy supply and mitigate climate change. It includes, among other things, a database of approved products with energy consumption and performance data.

Commenting on the agreement, EU energy commissioner Andris Piebalgs said: "This result underlines the EU's commitment to reach the energy efficiency targets agreed at the March council. It is important both for environmental reasons and as a means of saving taxpayers' money, since energy efficient office equipment is also cost effective."

The council is expected to adopt the regulation this month.

This article was originally published at Kablenet.

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