ECOS Paper: Product testing practices and the loss of energy

With testing methods under increased scrutiny post-Dieselgate, it has become apparent that the definition and implementation of test methodologies is a complex and resource-intensive exercise. Its increasing political relevance and application to serve societal needs introduces new realities to the regulatory and standardisation world, to which the latter has not sufficiently adapted. 

In this paper, ECOS examines issues related to measurement standards and product testing for the support and implementation of the Ecodesign and Energy Labelling Regulations, either for declaring a product’s performance or for the purpose of verifying compliance with those regulations.

ECOS’ experience in participating in regulatory and standardisation processes is presented, highlighting shortcomings in the regulations themselves with regards to verification procedures, and outlining the narrative of a system to define testing methodologies that does not sufficiently reflect today’s societal needs; that is a standardisation system that remains overly complex, non-transparent and industry-dominated.

These underlying challenges take the shape of tests that:

  • Do not always reflect the real-life operation of products;
  • Exploit regulatory loopholes and allow product manufacturers to freely interpret regulatory provisions in standards.

The full paper is available to read here