InkWELS – Issue 1, 2019

InkWELS newsletter

Water Efficiency Labelling and Standards (WELS) scheme

Issue 1, 2019

The Water Efficiency Labelling and Standards (WELS) scheme newsletter is published quarterly to update you on developments and highlight some of our achievements.

If you have particular topics you’d like to see covered in future, please let us know.

WELS saves Australians over $1 billion a year on utility bills

 Cover of evaluation of the environmental and economic impacts of WELS publication

The Institute for Sustainable Futures (ISF) at the University of Technology Sydney has recently completed an evaluation of the environmental and economic impacts of WELS.

The report found that households and businesses are now saving over $1billion a year on utility bills as a result of the WELS scheme.
This is expected to climb to over $2.6 billion dollars a year by 2036.

The report found that energy bills are where the largest savings can be found, followed by water bills.

The report also found that each person in Australia is currently saving an average of $42 per year from increased water efficiency of WELS-rated products since the start of the scheme. This equates to $168 per year for a family of four.

By 2036, the predicted utility bill savings grow to $81 per person per year across the country’s entire population.

These savings in water and energy costs are in addition to the 112 billion litres of water saved per year—enough to fill over 44,000 Olympic swimming pools, or nearly a quarter of the volume of Sydney Harbour.

You can read the report on our website.

Registration status update: from ‘ceasing’ to ‘expired’

Person with hands on an open laptop that shows the WELS database.

The renewal period for WELS registrations ended on 5 December 2018. All registrations that were not renewed, paid and approved have had their status changed from ‘expiring’ to ‘ceasing’.

If your products are now ‘ceasing’, they may still be supplied until 22 July 2019. After this date your products will display the ‘Expired’ status and become unregistered. It is illegal to supply, or offer to supply, unregistered products in Australia.

If a product’s existing registration has not been renewed, you may still register the product through a new application. This will mean that you will need to go through the full application process again and the product will be issued a new registration number. You can make a new application for a product at any time of the year.

For more information visit the Register your products section on our website.

Builders and developers work with WELS to boost industry compliance

Closeup of blue hard hat, yellow pencil, measuring tape and building plans.

During the past year the WELS team has been engaged in ‘Project New Build’.

Through this project our team has been working to increase the building industry’s compliance with the WELS scheme through education, engagement and inspections of property developments throughout Australia.

WELS compliance officers travelled to Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Perth, Adelaide and Canberra where they made contact with the builders and developers responsible for over 150 new building developments. We also spoke with peak industry groups such as Housing Industry Australia and the Property Council of Australia.

Increasing industry awareness of the labelling and registration requirements on WELS products—including those offered as part of any property development—remains a key focus for the WELS scheme.

If you are a builder or developer and would like to know more about your responsibilities under the WELS scheme, please visit ‘Planning, building and selling property developments’ on our website.

WELS at the ‘China-Australia Modular Construction Technology Forum’

image of modular building

WELS recently attended the China-Australia Modular Construction Technology Forum in Melbourne.

The event brought together the latest developments in research and practice on construction technologies with a focus on modular construction and structural assembly.

The modular building industry is a key focus for WELS education and compliance into the future, as the construction approach becomes increasingly popular in Australia.

Modular construction includes pre-installed WELS products such as taps, showers and toilets. There is a risk that these products will not be WaterMark certified, or registered with WELS, particularly if the products were installed overseas. Suppliers may be subject to compliance action if unregistered products are then supplied as part of a new building in Australia.

WELS aims to work with builders and developers in the modular construction industry to continue to promote awareness of the WELS scheme.

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