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LG Electronics Loses Energy Star Label Battle With DOE

LG Electronics will temporarily remove the Energy Star label from certain French-door refrigerators after failing to keep the Department of Energy from enforcing recent action against the company.

The DOE has stepped up its campaign to enforce requirements in its energy efficiency program -- a good step considering the Energy Star label had lost its luster in recent years. The government agency is going to make sure models that have the Energy Star label actually meet the standards and requirements of the program. Enforcing laws currently on the books is so much more logical than creating new ones.

This battle with LG was the first test of its stepped up enforcement. The DOE announced last month it had banned certain LG French-door refrigerator-freezers from using the Energy Star label because it did not meet requirements of the program. This wasn't some meager amount, either. A Consumer Reports test of the units in 2008 found energy usage was twice than the company claimed. LG responded by suing the DOE. The Korean electronics maker filed a lawsuit in December and asked the U.S. District Court to stop the DOE from forcing the company remove the Energy Star labels by Jan. 20. The court denied LG's motion Monday for a preliminary injunction. LG, while disappointed in the ruling, will comply with the decision, the company said in a statement.