The Energy Conservation Act 2001

The Government of India enacted the Energy Conservation Act, 2001 (52 of 2001). The Act provides for the legal framework, institutional arrangement and a regulatory mechanism at the Central and State level to embark upon energy efficiency drive in the country. Five major provisions of EC Act relate to

  1. Designated Consumers
  2. Standard and Labeling of Appliances
  3. Energy Conservation Building Codes
  4. Creation of Institutional Set up (BEE)
  5. Establishment of Energy Conservation Fund.

The Energy Conservation Act became effective from 1st March, 2002 and Bureau of Energy Efficiency (BEE) operationalized from 1st March, 2002. Energy efficiency institutional practices and programs in India are now mainly being guided through various voluntary and mandatory provisions of the Energy Conservation Act. The EC Act was amended in 2010 and the main amendments of the Act are given below:

The Energy Conservation (Amendment) Act, 2010- Main Amendments

  1. Commercial buildings which are having a connected load of 100 kW or contract demand of 120 kVA and above come under the purview of ECBC under EC Act. Earlier this limit was 500kW or 600kVA.
  2. The Central Government may issue the energy savings certificate to the designated consumer whose energy consumption is less than the prescribed norms and standards in accordance with the procedure as may be prescribed.
  3. The designated consumer whose energy consumption is more than the prescribed norms and standards shall be entitled to purchase the energy savings certificate to comply with the prescribed norms and standards.

The Central Government may, in consultation with the Bureau, prescribe the value of per metric ton of oil equivalent of energy consumed.

Energy Conservation Building Code (ECBC)

  1. The Energy Conservation Building Code (ECBC) was launched by the Government of India on 27th May, 2007. The ECBC sets minimum energy standards for new commercial buildings having a connected load of 100kW or contract demand of 120kVA in terms of Energy Conservation (Amendment) Act, 2010.
  2. Harmonization of ECBC with National Building Code (NBC) is also under progress by including a chapter on “Approach to Sustainability” in NBC-2005. BEE has developed ECO-nirman conformance check tool with an objective of helping architects and design professionals to assess the conformance of their designs with code requirements.
  3. Star labelling of building in 3 categories i.e. day use office buildings, BPOs and Shopping malls has been developed and put in public domain.

National Electricity Code

National Electrical Code covers the requirements relating to electrical installations in specific occupancies. Code takes into account the stipulations in several Indian Standards dealing with the various aspects relating to electrical installation practice. Several product standards also exist, and compliance with relevant Indian Standards is desirable. The National Electrical Code covers the following:
Standard good practices for selection of various items of electrical equipment forming part of power systems.
Recommendations concerning safety and related matter in the wiring of electrical installations of buildings or industrial structures, promoting compatibility between such recommendations and those concerning the equipment installed.
General safety procedures and practices in electrical work.
Additional precautions to be taken for use of electrical equipment for special environmental conditions like explosive and active atmosphere.
Its provisions are expected to serve as a model for adoption in the interest of safety and economy and with the intent to keep our electrical installation practices at par with the best practices in the world.

IEEE 519 Standard for Harmonics

IEEE 519 provides a standard method to measure current harmonics and voltage harmonics and sets recommended guidelines for power system harmonics. It is intended to limit the negative impact of non-linear power system loads. IEEE 519 refers to the connection point between the utility line and the building’s power system as the Point of Common Coupling or PCC. IEEE standard 519 also contains recommendations for harmonic controls for devices with reactive components like rectifiers and capacitors. IEEE 519 is intended to measure power harmonics on power system connections between a utility line and a building. IEEE standard 519 recommends the maximum limits for Total Harmonics Distortions, individual level of current and voltage harmonics with different PCC Voltage.