OTTAWA, Dec. 19, 2019 /CNW/ - A milestone energy efficiency program was launched today by Canada's leading internet service providers (ISPs) and key manufacturers of the equipment used with their services. With this new voluntary agreement, which has been developed in partnership with Natural Resources Canada (NRCan), provincial governments, and leading utilities, ISPs and manufacturers commit to improving the energy efficiency of devices such as modems and routers by 2021. While this equipment already saves energy by enabling e-commerce, telecommuting, smart lighting and thermostats, and other energy savings opportunities, the new program will further advance the companies' commitments to Canada's shared energy efficiency and climate change objectives.
The new program builds upon the success of a similar agreement for TV set-top boxes implemented in 2017 by the same parties. Voluntary agreements have been employed increasingly around the world and won praise from industry and regulators, in particular for consumer electronics categories that change too quickly for traditional regulatory procedures to keep pace. The agreement includes a mechanism to ensure equipment innovations that enable faster Internet speeds and new and improved features and services will continue to be made available promptly to Canadians, and in a manner consistent with energy efficiency commitments and goals.
"Energy efficiency saves Canadians money. The work of these companies will help Canadian households and businesses be more environmentally friendly, while driving innovation," said the Honourable Seamus O'Regan, Canada's Minister of Natural Resources.
Under the new agreement, Bell, Cogeco, Rogers, Shaw, and Vidéotron have each committed that 90 per cent of their new modems, routers and other program equipment will meet rigorous efficiency levels beginning January 1, 2021. Like the set-top box agreement, compliance will be determined through independent testing and auditing, and parties that fall short of a commitment must implement a remedial plan under the supervision of NRCan. The public will have access to the auditor's annual reports and test results for each new model of equipment received by the Internet providers beginning in 2020.
"Consumers are looking for the highest quality Internet services delivered in an energy efficient manner," said Ken Smithard, President, Cogeco Connexion. "The energy efficiency voluntary program for set-top boxes has proven to be highly effective in driving energy efficiency while still facilitating innovation, and we are confident that this same approach for home Internet equipment will deliver the best results for our customers."
The program aligns with the technical standards and test methods of a similar agreement adopted in the United States that achieved a 66 per cent improvement in energy efficiency of Internet equipment in three years, relative to Internet speeds. Standardization with the global Internet equipment market provides Canadian service providers a broader and more competitive range of equipment options, leading to lower prices and better services for Canadian consumers.
In addition to the Internet service providers, the agreement was signed by manufacturers CommScope and Technicolor, and supporting organizations include CableLabs® and the Consumer Technology Association (CTA)®. For more information including the text of the voluntary agreements, visit www.energyefficiency-va.ca.
About the supporting organizations
As the leading innovation and R&D lab for the cable industry, CableLabs® creates global impact through its member companies around the world and its subsidiaries, Kyrio and UpRamp. With a state-of-the art research and innovation facility and collaborative ecosystem with thousands of vendors, CableLabs delivers impactful network technologies for the entire industry. For more information, please visit www.cablelabs.com. Join CableLabs at 4Front where it's bringing together technologists, business leaders and policymakers to explore the opportunities and challenges of a fully connected world.
Consumer Technology Association
As North America's largest technology trade association, CTA® is the tech sector. Our members are the world's leading innovators – from startups to global brands – helping support more than 18 million American jobs. CTA owns and produces CES® – the largest, most influential tech event on the planet. Find us at CTA.tech. Follow us @CTAtech.
For further information: Media contacts: Elliot Grimm, Consumer Technology Association, [email protected], 703-907-5240; Ann Finnie, CableLabs, [email protected], 408-203-1559; Julien Lavoie, Navigator Ltd., [email protected], 416-642-6122