Water Efficiency Labelling and Standards (WELS) scheme
Issue 2, 2019
The InkWELS newsletter provides stakeholders with an update on activities and achievements under the Water Efficiency Labelling and Standards (WELS) scheme.
If you have any relevant topics you would like covered in future additions of InkWELS, please contact us.
WELS representatives and a departmental international liaison officer travelled to China at the end of May 2019 to attend the Plumbing Products Industry Group Forum and to provide an update on WELS compliance activities.
WELS representatives also attended the Kitchen and Bath Fair in Shanghai which provided an opportunity to educate existing and potential product suppliers to Australia about WELS requirements. This was followed by a meeting with Chinese plumbing product manufacturers where WELS compliance requirements, including flow controllers was discussed.
WELS is running an advertising campaign on www.ebay.com.au from September to December 2019. The advertisements appear next to all tap and shower listings that are being sold on the website. The advertising is aimed at increasing stakeholder compliance with the Water Efficiency Labelling and Standards Act 2005, particularly with regard to product registrations. The campaign forms part of communication activities identified in the WELS Compliance and Enforcement Strategy 2018 to 2020.
WELS staff are working with Standards Australia and other countries, through the International Organisation for Standardisation (ISO), to develop an international standard for water efficiency labelling programs. Our aim is to have an international standard that complements the Australian standard and addresses the water efficiency labelling needs of other countries.
The ISO committee met over 10-12 April 2019 in Switzerland to discuss the activities undertaken by the working groups. They reviewed a preliminary draft and agreed to the structure and content for the international standard. The committee’s third meeting was held in Singapore over 16-18 October 2019 to discuss comments on a revised version of the preliminary draft. The next ISO committee meeting is scheduled for April 2020 with the aim of achieving committee member agreement on a final draft.
WELS has implemented the first stage of new enhancements to its WELS product registration database which has streamlined application and renewal assessment processes. The changes are aimed at reducing processing timeframes for product registrations and renewals.
The World Plumbing Conference was held in Melbourne over 11-13 September 2019. WELS was a sponsor of the Conference and maintained a stall which generated a lot of interest from attendees. Our participation was a great opportunity to engage with industry on WELS and understand emerging industry trends and needs.
Due to a recent increase in tapware being offered in multiple colour ranges in Australia, WELS would like to take this opportunity to remind all registrants that colour options must be registered as a variant to the parent model.
Model variants shall be registered in the WELS registration database in the form in which they are offered for supply. If a new product is manufactured and meets all the criteria for being a variant to the parent model, it shall be registered as a variant before it is offered for supply in Australia.
There is currently no limit to the number of variants you can attach to a registered product providing the product meets the criteria of a variant in accordance with AS/NZS 6400:2016. There is also no fee payable for registering a variant.
All registered products can have variants with the exception of products that fall into the following categories:
- expiring status
- expired status
- minor registration status.