The Water Efficiency Labelling and Standards (WELS) Scheme provides for mandatory water efficiency labelling and minimum water efficiency standards for specified water-using products.
The scheme is intended to encourage domestic and commercial consumers to buy more water efficient products and appliances, with the intention of reducing water consumption.
Consumers now have access to nationally consistent information that helps them compare the water consumption and water efficiency of certain products, enabling them to factor this into their purchasing decisions. By choosing the more efficient products, consumers can reduce their water and energy consumption, save money and encourage manufacturers to produce more water efficient products. This will help Australia reduce its unnecessary use of water.
All WELS products must be registered with the Australian Government and rated and labelled according to the requirements of the WELS Standard AS/NZS6400:2005 Water-efficient products-Rating and labelling. Ratings are based on a six star system; the more stars a product has, the more efficient it is. For whitegoods, the star rating index allows the determination of a Star Rating to the nearest 1/2 star; a star rating index of less than 1 receives a 0 star.
The following products are currently covered by the WELS Scheme:
Plumbing products such as showers and tap equipment;
Sanitary ware such as toilet (lavatory) equipment and urinal equipment; and
White goods such as clothes washing machines and dishwashers.
Flow controllers are also covered by the WELS scheme; however, registration and labelling of these are voluntary.