[Federal Register Volume 78, Number 134 (Friday, July 12, 2013)]
[Proposed Rules]
[Pages 41873-41877]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2013-16728]


-----------------------------------------------------------------------

DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY

10 CFR Part 430

[Docket No. EERE-2013-BT-DET-0035]
RIN 1904-AD04


Energy Conservation Program for Consumer Products and Certain 
Commercial and Industrial Equipment: Proposed Determination of 
Computers as a Covered Consumer Product

AGENCY: Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy, Department of 
Energy.

ACTION: Proposed determination.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------

SUMMARY: The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE or the ``Department'') has 
determined tentatively that computers qualify as a covered product 
under Part A of Title III of the Energy Policy and Conservation Act 
(EPCA), as amended. DOE has determined that computers meet the criteria 
for covered products because classifying products of such type as 
covered products is necessary or appropriate to carry out the purposes 
of EPCA, and the average U.S. household energy use for computers is 
likely to exceed 100 kilowatt-hours (kWh) per year.

DATES: DOE will accept written comments, data, and information on this 
notice, but no later than August 12, 2013.

ADDRESSES: Interested persons may submit comments, identified by docket 
number EERE-2013-BT-DET-0035, by any of the following methods:
     Federal eRulemaking Portal: www.regulations.gov. Follow 
the instructions for submitting comments.
     Email: Computers2013DET0035@ee.doe.gov. Include EERE-2013-
BT-DET-0035 and/or RIN 1904-AD04 in the subject line of the message.
     Mail: Ms. Brenda Edwards, U.S. Department of Energy, 
Building Technologies Program, Mailstop EE-2J, Proposed Determination 
for computers, EERE-2013-BT-DET-0035 and/or RIN 1904-AD04, 1000 
Independence Avenue SW., Washington, DC 20585-0121. Phone: (202) 586-
2945. Please submit one signed paper original.
     Hand Delivery/Courier: Ms. Brenda Edwards, U.S. Department 
of Energy, Building Technologies Program, 6th Floor, 950 L'Enfant Plaza 
SW., Washington, DC 20024. Phone: (202) 586-2945. Please submit one 
signed paper original.
    Instructions: All submissions received must include the agency name 
and docket number or RIN for this rulemaking.
    Docket: For access to the docket to read background documents or 
comments received, go to the U.S. Department of Energy, 6th Floor, 950 
L'Enfant Plaza SW., Washington, DC 20024, (202) 586-2945, between 9:00 
a.m. and 4:00 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays. 
Please call Ms. Brenda Edwards at (202) 586-2945 for additional 
information regarding visiting the Resource Room.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Mr. Jeremy Dommu, U.S. Department of 
Energy, Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy, Building 
Technologies Program, EE-2J, 1000 Independence Avenue SW., Washington, 
DC 20585-0121. Telephone: (202) 586-9870. Email: DOE_computer_standards@ee.doe.gov.
    In the Office of General Counsel, contact Ms. Celia Sher, U.S. 
Department of Energy, Office of the General Counsel, GC-71, 1000 
Independence Avenue SW., Washington, DC 20585-0121. Telephone: (202) 
287-6122. Email: Celia.Sher@hq.doe.gov.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: 

Table of Contents

I. Statutory Authority
II. Current Rulemaking Process
III. Proposed Definition
IV. Evaluation of Computers as a Covered Product Subject to Energy 
Conservation Standards
    A. Coverage Necessary or Appropriate To Carry Out Purposes of 
EPCA
    B. Average Household Energy Use
V. Procedural Issues and Regulatory Review
    A. Review Under Executive Order 12866
    B. Review Under the Regulatory Flexibility Act
    C. Review Under the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995
    D. Review Under the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969
    E. Review Under Executive Order 13132
    F. Review Under Executive Order 12988
    G. Review Under the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995
    H. Review Under the Treasury and General Government 
Appropriations Act of 1999
    I. Review Under Executive Order 12630
    J. Review Under the Treasury and General Government 
Appropriations Act of 2001
    K. Review Under Executive Order 13211
    L. Review Under the Information Quality Bulletin for Peer Review
VI. Public Participation
    A. Submission of Comments
    B. Issues on Which DOE Seeks Comments

I. Statutory Authority

    Title III of the Energy Policy and Conservation Act (EPCA), as 
amended (42 U.S.C. 6291 et seq.), sets forth various provisions 
designed to improve energy efficiency. Part A of Title III of EPCA (42 
U.S.C. 6291-6309) established the ``Energy Conservation Program for 
Consumer Products Other Than Automobiles,'' which covers consumer 
products and certain commercial products (hereafter referred to as 
``covered products'').\1\ In addition to specifying a list of covered 
residential and commercial products, EPCA contains provisions that 
enable the Secretary of Energy to classify additional types of consumer 
products as covered products. For a given product to be classified as a 
covered product, the Secretary must determine that:
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \1\ For editorial reasons, upon codification in the U.S. Code, 
Part B was re-designated Part A.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    (1) Classifying the product as a covered product is necessary for 
the purposes of EPCA; and
    (2) The average annual per-household energy use by products of such 
type is likely to exceed 100 kilowatt-hours (kWh) per year. (42 U.S.C. 
6292(b)(1))
    For the Secretary to prescribe an energy conservation standard 
pursuant to 42 U.S.C. 6295(o) and (p) for covered products added 
pursuant to 42 U.S.C. 6292(b)(1), he must also determine that:
    (1) The average household energy use of the products has exceeded 
150 kWh per household for a 12-month period;
    (2) The aggregate 12-month energy use of the products has exceeded 
4.2 TWh;
    (3) Substantial improvement in energy efficiency is technologically 
feasible; and
    (4) Application of a labeling rule under 42 U.S.C. 6294 is unlikely 
to be sufficient to induce manufacturers to produce, and consumers and 
other persons to purchase, covered products of such type (or class) 
that achieve the maximum energy efficiency that is technologically 
feasible and economically justified. (42 U.S.C. 6295(l)(1)).
    Computers are devices which perform logical operations and process 
data. If DOE issues a final determination that computers are a covered 
product, DOE will consider test procedures and energy conservation 
standards for computers. DOE will determine if computers satisfy the 
provisions of 42 U.S.C. 6295(l)(1) during the course of any energy 
conservation standards rulemaking.

II. Current Rulemaking Process

    DOE has not previously conducted an energy conservation standard

[[Page 41874]]

rulemaking for computers. If, after public comment, DOE issues a final 
determination of coverage for this product, DOE will consider both test 
procedures and energy conservation standards for this product.
    With respect to test procedures, DOE will consider a proposed test 
procedure for measuring the energy efficiency, energy use or estimated 
annual operating cost of computers during a representative average use 
cycle or period of use that is not unduly burdensome to conduct. (42 
U.S.C. 6293(b)(3)) In a test procedure rulemaking, DOE initially 
prepares a notice of proposed rulemaking (NOPR) and allows interested 
parties to present oral and written data, views, and arguments with 
respect to such procedures. In prescribing new test procedures, DOE 
takes into account relevant information including technological 
developments relating to energy use or energy efficiency of computers.
    With respect to energy conservation standards, DOE is required to 
publish a NOPR. The NOPR provides DOE's proposal for potential energy 
conservations standards and a summary of the results of DOE's 
supporting technical analysis. The details of DOE's energy conservation 
standards analysis are provided in a technical support document (TSD) 
that describes the details of DOE's analysis of both the burdens and 
benefits of potential standards, pursuant to 42 U.S.C. 6295(o). Because 
computers would be a product that is newly covered under 42 U.S.C. 
6292(b)(1), DOE would also consider as part of any energy conservation 
standard NOPR whether computers satisfy the requirements of 42 U.S.C. 
6295(l)(1). After the publication of the NOPR, DOE affords interested 
persons an opportunity during a period of not less than 60 days to 
provide oral and written comment. After receiving and considering the 
comments on the NOPR and not less than 90 days after the publication of 
the NOPR, DOE would issue the final rule prescribing any new energy 
conservation standards for computers.

III. Proposed Definition

    DOE proposes to add a definition for ``Computers'' in the Code of 
Federal Regulations to clarify coverage of any potential test procedure 
or energy conservation standard that may arise from today's proposed 
determination. There currently is no statutory definition of computers. 
DOE has determined preliminarily that adding computers as a covered 
product is justified. Accordingly, DOE proposes the following 
definition of computers to consider test procedures and energy 
conservation standards for computers and to provide clarity for 
interested parties as it continues its analyses:
    A consumer product which performs logical operations and processes 
data. A computer is composed of, at a minimum: (a) A central processing 
unit (CPU) to perform operations, or the ability to function as a 
client gateway to a server which acts as a computational CPU; (b) user 
input devices such as a keyboard, mouse, or touchpad; and (c) an 
integrated display screen and/or the ability to support an external 
display screen to output information.
    This proposed definition includes (but is not necessarily limited 
to) desktop computers, integrated desktop computers, laptop/notebook/
netbook computers, and workstations. This proposed definition does not 
include servers without the ability to connect user input devices and/
or support an external display screen. DOE seeks feedback from 
interested parties on its proposed definition of computers.

IV. Evaluation of Computers as a Covered Product Subject to Energy 
Conservation Standards

    The following sections describe DOE's evaluation of whether 
computers fulfill the criteria for being added as a covered product 
pursuant to 42 U.S.C. 6292(b)(1). As stated previously, DOE may 
classify a consumer product as a covered product if (1) classifying 
products of such type as covered products is necessary and appropriate 
to carry out the purposes of EPCA; and (2) the average annual per-
household energy use by products of such type is likely to exceed 100 
kWh (or its Btu equivalent) per year.

A. Coverage Necessary or Appropriate to Carry Out Purposes of EPCA

    Coverage of computers is necessary or appropriate to carry out the 
purposes of EPCA, which include: (1) To conserve energy supplies 
through energy conservation programs, and, where necessary, the 
regulation of certain energy uses; and (2) to provide for improved 
energy efficiency of motor vehicles, major appliances, and certain 
other consumer products. (42 U.S.C. 6201) The aggregate energy use of 
computers is significant and is projected to hold steady in the near 
future.\2\ Current estimates of national electricity usage are 30.3 
billion kWh in the residential sector, and 31.3 billion kWh in the 
commercial sector.\3\ The penetration of computers in the residential 
sector is high, with 63% of U.S. households owning a desktop computer, 
and 65% of U.S. households owning a notebook, laptop, or netbook 
computer, in 2013.\4\ Coverage of computers will enable the 
conservation of energy supplies through both labeling programs and the 
regulation of computer energy efficiency. There is significant 
variation in the annual energy consumption of different models 
currently available, therefore technologies exist to reduce the energy 
consumption of computers.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \2\ U.S. Energy Information Administration, 2013. Annual Energy 
Outlook 2013. http://www.eia.gov/forecasts/aeo/.
    \3\ Urban, B. et al., 2011. Energy Consumption of Consumer 
Electronics in U.S. Homes in 2010. Prepared by the Fraunhofer Center 
for Sustainable Energy Systems for the Consumer Electronics 
Association; Zogg, R. et al., 2009. Energy Savings Potential and 
RD&D Opportunities for Commercial Building Appliances. Prepared by 
Navigant Consulting, Inc. for DOE.
    \4\ Consumer Electronics Association, 2013. 15th Annual CE 
Ownership and Market Potential Study.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

B. Average Household Energy Use

    DOE calculated average household energy use for computers, in 
households that use the product, based on estimates reported in 
recently published studies. In these studies, the average annual energy 
use for a desktop computer was estimated to be 220 kWh/yr, and the 
average annual energy use for a portable computer was estimated to be 
62 kWh/yr, resulting in a weighted average of 130 kWh/yr per 
computer.\5\ However, a significant fraction of U.S. households own 
more than a single computer, thus the total average household energy 
consumption is likely to be higher than these estimations. If, as 
reported above, 63% of households own at least one desktop computer, 
and 65% of households own at least one portable computer, then 87% of 
households own at least one computer.\6\ There are an estimated 119 
million households in the U.S. in 2013; \7\ therefore, there are 
approximately 104 million households that own at least one computer.

[[Page 41875]]

Assuming that the total national electricity consumption of computers 
in the residential sector is 30.3 billion kWh \8\, DOE estimates the 
average annual per-household electricity usage to be approximately 291 
kWh/yr. Therefore, DOE tentatively determines that the average annual 
per-household energy use for computers is likely to exceed 100 kWh/yr, 
satisfying the provisions of 42 U.S.C. 6292(b)(1).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \5\ Urban, B. et al., 2011. Energy Consumption of Consumer 
Electronics in U.S. Homes in 2010. Prepared by the Fraunhofer Center 
for Sustainable Energy Systems for the Consumer Electronics 
Association; Zogg, R. et al., 2009. Energy Savings Potential and 
RD&D Opportunities for Commercial Building Appliances. Prepared by 
Navigant Consulting, Inc. for DOE.
    \6\ This assumes that the probability of a household owning a 
desktop computer is independent of the probability of a household 
owning a laptop computer. In reality, this may or may not be the 
case. The assumption of independence provides an upper bound on the 
total percentage of households that own at least one computer, and 
therefore results in a conservative estimate of the annual per-
household electricity usage.
    \7\ U.S. Energy Information Administration, 2013. Annual Energy 
Outlook 2013. http://www.eia.gov/forecasts/aeo/.
    \8\ Urban, B. et al., 2011. Energy Consumption of Consumer 
Electronics in U.S. Homes in 2010. Prepared by the Fraunhofer Center 
for Sustainable Energy Systems for the Consumer Electronics 
Association; Zogg, R. et al., 2009. Energy Savings Potential and 
RD&D Opportunities for Commercial Building Appliances. Prepared by 
Navigant Consulting, Inc. for DOE.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Based on the above, DOE has determined tentatively that computers 
qualify as a covered product under Part A of Title III of the EPCA, as 
amended.

V. Procedural Issues and Regulatory Review

    DOE has reviewed its proposed determination of computers under the 
following executive orders and acts.

A. Review Under Executive Order 12866

    The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) has determined that 
coverage determination rulemakings do not constitute ``significant 
regulatory actions'' under section 3(f) of Executive Order 12866, 
Regulatory Planning and Review, 58 FR 51735 (Oct. 4, 1993). 
Accordingly, this proposed action was not subject to review under the 
Executive Order by the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs 
(OIRA) in OMB.

B. Review Under the Regulatory Flexibility Act

    The Regulatory Flexibility Act (5 U.S.C. 601 et seq., as amended by 
the Small Business Regulatory Enforcement Fairness Act of 1996) 
requires preparation of an initial regulatory flexibility analysis for 
any rule that, by law, must be proposed for public comment, unless the 
agency certifies that the proposed rule, if promulgated, will not have 
a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small 
entities. A regulatory flexibility analysis examines the impact of the 
rule on small entities and considers alternative ways of reducing 
negative effects. Also, as required by E.O. 13272, ``Proper 
Consideration of Small Entities in Agency Rulemaking'' 67 FR 53461 
(August 16, 2002), DOE published procedures and policies on February 
19, 2003 to ensure that the potential impact of its rules on small 
entities are properly considered during the DOE rulemaking process. 68 
FR 7990 (February 19, 2003). DOE makes its procedures and policies 
available on the Office of the General Counsel's Web site at 
www.gc.doe.gov./gc/office-general-counsel.
    DOE reviewed today's proposed determination under the provisions of 
the Regulatory Flexibility Act and the policies and procedures 
published on February 19, 2003. If adopted, today's proposed 
determination would set no standards; they would only positively 
determine that future standards may be warranted and should be explored 
in an energy conservation standards and test procedure rulemaking. 
Economic impacts on small entities would be considered in the context 
of such rulemakings. On the basis of the foregoing, DOE certifies that 
the proposed determination, if adopted, would have no significant 
economic impact on a substantial number of small entities. Accordingly, 
DOE has not prepared a regulatory flexibility analysis for this 
proposed determination. DOE will transmit this certification and 
supporting statement of factual basis to the Chief Counsel for Advocacy 
of the Small Business Administration for review under 5 U.S.C. 605(b).

C. Review Under the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995

    This proposed determination, which proposes to determine that 
computers meet the criteria for a covered product for which the 
Secretary may prescribe an energy conservation standard pursuant to 42 
U.S.C. 6295(o) and (p), will impose no new information or record-
keeping requirements. Accordingly, OMB clearance is not required under 
the Paperwork Reduction Act. (44 U.S.C. 3501 et seq.)

D. Review Under the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969

    In this notice, DOE proposes to positively determine that future 
standards may be warranted and that environmental impacts should be 
explored in an energy conservation standards rulemaking. DOE has 
determined that review under the National Environmental Policy Act of 
1969 (NEPA), Public Law 91-190, codified at 42 U.S.C. 4321 et seq. is 
not required at this time. NEPA review can only be initiated ``as soon 
as environmental impacts can be meaningfully evaluated'' (10 CFR 
1021.213(b)). This proposed determination would only determine that 
future standards may be warranted, but would not itself propose to set 
any specific standard. DOE has, therefore, determined that there are no 
environmental impacts to be evaluated at this time. Accordingly, 
neither an environmental assessment nor an environmental impact 
statement is required.

E. Review Under Executive Order 13132

    Executive Order (E.O.) 13132, ``Federalism'' 64 FR 43255 (August 
10, 1999), imposes certain requirements on agencies formulating and 
implementing policies or regulations that preempt State law or that 
have Federalism implications. The Executive Order requires agencies to 
examine the constitutional and statutory authority supporting any 
action that would limit the policymaking discretion of the States and 
to assess carefully the necessity for such actions. The Executive Order 
also requires agencies to have an accountable process to ensure 
meaningful and timely input by State and local officials in developing 
regulatory policies that have Federalism implications. On March 14, 
2000, DOE published a statement of policy describing the 
intergovernmental consultation process that it will follow in 
developing such regulations. 65 FR 13735 (March 14, 2000). DOE has 
examined today's proposed determination and concludes that it would not 
preempt State law or have substantial direct effects on the States, on 
the relationship between the Federal government and the States, or on 
the distribution of power and responsibilities among the various levels 
of government. EPCA governs and prescribes Federal preemption of State 
regulations as to energy conservation for the product that is the 
subject of today's proposed determination. States can petition DOE for 
exemption from such preemption to the extent permitted, and based on 
criteria, set forth in EPCA. (42 U.S.C. 6297) No further action is 
required by E.O. 13132.

F. Review Under Executive Order 12988

    With respect to the review of existing regulations and the 
promulgation of new regulations, section 3(a) of E.O. 12988, ``Civil 
Justice Reform'' 61 FR 4729 (February 7, 1996), imposes on Federal 
agencies the duty to: (1) Eliminate drafting errors and ambiguity; (2) 
write regulations to minimize litigation; (3) provide a clear legal 
standard for affected conduct rather than a general standard; and (4) 
promote simplification and burden reduction. Section 3(b) of E.O. 12988 
specifically requires that Executive agencies make every reasonable 
effort to ensure that the regulation specifies the following: (1) The 
preemptive effect, if any; (2) any effect on existing Federal law or 
regulation; (3) a clear legal standard for

[[Page 41876]]

affected conduct while promoting simplification and burden reduction; 
(4) the retroactive effect, if any; (5) definitions of key terms; and 
(6) other important issues affecting clarity and general draftsmanship 
under any guidelines issued by the Attorney General. Section 3(c) of 
E.O. 12988 requires Executive agencies to review regulations in light 
of applicable standards in sections 3(a) and 3(b) to determine whether 
these standards are met, or whether it is unreasonable to meet one or 
more of them. DOE completed the required review and determined that, to 
the extent permitted by law, this proposed determination meets the 
relevant standards of E.O. 12988.

G. Review Under the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995

    Title II of the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995 (UMRA) (Pub. 
L. 104-4, codified at 2 U.S.C. 1501 et seq.) requires each Federal 
agency to assess the effects of Federal regulatory actions on State, 
local, and tribal governments and the private sector. For regulatory 
actions likely to result in a rule that may cause expenditures by 
State, local, and Tribal governments, in the aggregate, or by the 
private sector of $100 million or more in any 1 year (adjusted annually 
for inflation), section 202 of UMRA requires a Federal agency to 
publish a written statement that estimates the resulting costs, 
benefits, and other effects on the national economy. (2 U.S.C. 1532(a) 
and (b)) UMRA requires a Federal agency to develop an effective process 
to permit timely input by elected officers of State, local, and tribal 
governments on a proposed ``significant intergovernmental mandate.'' 
UMRA also requires an agency plan for giving notice and opportunity for 
timely input to small governments that may be potentially affected 
before establishing any requirement that might significantly or 
uniquely affect them. On March 18, 1997, DOE published a statement of 
policy on its process for intergovernmental consultation under UMRA. 62 
FR 12820 (March 18, 1997). (This policy also is available at 
www.gc.doe.gov). DOE reviewed today's proposed determination pursuant 
to these existing authorities and its policy statement and determined 
that the proposed determination contains neither an intergovernmental 
mandate nor a mandate that may result in the expenditure of $100 
million or more in any year, so the UMRA requirements do not apply.

H. Review Under the Treasury and General Government Appropriations Act 
of 1999

    Section 654 of the Treasury and General Government Appropriations 
Act of 1999 (Pub. L. 105-277) requires Federal agencies to issue a 
Family Policymaking Assessment for any rule that may affect family 
well-being. This proposed determination would not have any impact on 
the autonomy or integrity of the family as an institution. Accordingly, 
DOE has concluded that it is not necessary to prepare a Family 
Policymaking Assessment.

I. Review Under Executive Order 12630

    Pursuant to E.O. 12630, ``Governmental Actions and Interference 
with Constitutionally Protected Property Rights'' 53 FR 8859 (March 15, 
1988), DOE determined that this proposed determination would not result 
in any takings that might require compensation under the Fifth 
Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.

J. Review Under the Treasury and General Government Appropriations Act 
of 2001

    The Treasury and General Government Appropriation Act of 2001 (44 
U.S.C. 3516, note) requires agencies to review most disseminations of 
information they make to the public under guidelines established by 
each agency pursuant to general guidelines issued by OMB. The OMB's 
guidelines were published at 67 FR 8452 (February 22, 2002), and DOE's 
guidelines were published at 67 FR 62446 (October 7, 2002). DOE has 
reviewed today's proposed determination under the OMB and DOE 
guidelines and has concluded that it is consistent with applicable 
policies in those guidelines.

K. Review Under Executive Order 13211

    E.O. 13211, ``Actions Concerning Regulations That Significantly 
Affect Energy Supply, Distribution, or Use,'' 66 FR 28355 (May 22, 
2001), requires Federal agencies to prepare and submit to OMB a 
Statement of Energy Effects for any proposed significant energy action. 
A ``significant energy action'' is defined as any action by an agency 
that promulgates a final rule or is expected to lead to promulgation of 
a final rule, and that: (1) Is a significant regulatory action under 
E.O. 12866, or any successor order; and (2) is likely to have a 
significant adverse effect on the supply, distribution, or use of 
energy; or (3) is designated by the Administrator of OIRA as a 
significant energy action. For any proposed significant energy action, 
the agency must give a detailed statement of any adverse effects on 
energy supply, distribution, or use if the proposal is implemented, and 
of reasonable alternatives to the proposed action and their expected 
benefits on energy supply, distribution, and use.
    DOE has concluded that today's regulatory action proposing to 
determine that computers meet the criteria for a covered product for 
which the Secretary may prescribe an energy conservation standard 
pursuant to 42 U.S.C. 6295(o) and (p) would not have a significant 
adverse effect on the supply, distribution, or use of energy. This 
action is also not a significant regulatory action for purposes of E.O. 
12866, and the OIRA Administrator has not designated this proposed 
determination as a significant energy action under E.O. 12866 or any 
successor order. Therefore, this proposed determination is not a 
significant energy action. Accordingly, DOE has not prepared a 
Statement of Energy Effects for this proposed determination.

L. Review Under the Information Quality Bulletin for Peer Review

    On December 16, 2004, OMB, in consultation with the Office of 
Science and Technology Policy (OSTP), issued its Final Information 
Quality Bulletin for Peer Review (the Bulletin). 70 FR 2664 (January 
14, 2005). The Bulletin establishes that certain scientific information 
shall be peer reviewed by qualified specialists before it is 
disseminated by the Federal government, including influential 
scientific information related to agency regulatory actions. The 
purpose of the Bulletin is to enhance the quality and credibility of 
the Government's scientific information. DOE has determined that the 
analyses conducted for this rulemaking do not constitute ``influential 
scientific information,'' which the Bulletin defines as ``scientific 
information the agency reasonably can determine will have or does have 
a clear and substantial impact on important public policies or private 
sector decisions.'' 70 FR 2667 (January 14, 2005). The analyses were 
subject to pre-dissemination review prior to issuance of this 
rulemaking.
    DOE will determine the appropriate level of review that would be 
applicable to any future rulemaking to establish energy conservation 
standards for computers.

VI. Public Participation

A. Submission of Comments

    DOE will accept comments, data, and information regarding this 
notice of proposed determination no later than

[[Page 41877]]

the date provided at the beginning of this notice. After the close of 
the comment period, DOE will review the comments received and determine 
whether computers are a covered product under EPCA.
    Comments, data, and information submitted to DOE's email address 
for this proposed determination should be provided in WordPerfect, 
Microsoft Word, PDF, or text (ASCII) file format. Submissions should 
avoid the use of special characters or any form of encryption, and 
wherever possible comments should include the electronic signature of 
the author. No telefacsimiles (faxes) will be accepted.
    According to 10 CFR 1004.11, any person submitting information that 
he or she believes to be confidential and exempt by law from public 
disclosure should submit two copies: one copy of the document should 
have all the information believed to be confidential deleted. DOE will 
make its own determination as to the confidential status of the 
information and treat it according to its determination.
    Factors of interest to DOE when evaluating requests to treat 
submitted information as confidential include (1) A description of the 
items; (2) whether and why such items are customarily treated as 
confidential within the industry; (3) whether the information is 
generally known or available from public sources; (4) whether the 
information has previously been made available to others without 
obligations concerning its confidentiality; (5) an explanation of the 
competitive injury to the submitting persons which would result from 
public disclosure; (6) a date after which such information might no 
longer be considered confidential; and (7) why disclosure of the 
information would be contrary to the public interest.

B. Issues on Which DOE Seeks Comments

    DOE welcomes comments on all aspects of this proposed 
determination. DOE is particularly interested in receiving comments 
from interested parties on the following issues related to the proposed 
determination for computers:
     Definition(s) of computers;
     Whether classifying computers as a covered product is 
necessary or appropriate to carry out the purposes of EPCA;
     Calculations and values for average household energy 
consumption; and
     Availability or lack of availability of technologies for 
improving energy efficiency of computers.
    The Department is interested in receiving views concerning other 
relevant issues that participants believe would affect DOE's ability to 
establish test procedures and energy conservation standards for 
computers. The Department invites all interested parties to submit in 
writing by August 12, 2013, comments and information on matters 
addressed in this notice and on other matters relevant to consideration 
of a determination for computers.
    After the expiration of the period for submitting written 
statements, the Department will consider all comments and additional 
information that is obtained from interested parties or through further 
analyses, and it will prepare a final determination. If DOE determines 
that computers qualify as a covered product, DOE will consider a test 
procedure and energy conservation standards for computers. Members of 
the public will be given an opportunity to submit written and oral 
comments on any proposed test procedure and standards.

List of Subjects in 10 CFR part 430

    Administrative practice and procedure, Confidential business 
information, Energy conservation, Reporting and recordkeeping 
requirements.

    Issued in Washington, DC, on July 5, 2013.
Kathleen B. Hogan,
Deputy Assistant Secretary for Energy Efficiency, Energy Efficiency and 
Renewable Energy.
[FR Doc. 2013-16728 Filed 7-11-13; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 6450-01-P