Europe’s regulation bureaucrats are going out of control once again.
Citizens, they feel, aren’t grown up enough to responsibly operate their own household applicances. They need to be nannied, the EU bureaucrats believe.
So out they come with the European Ecodesign Directive, which originally was intended to regulate electric appliances like flat screen televisions, dishwashers or lamps. But the power to intrude into people’s lives and tell them how to live was just too irresistible – Brussels bureaucrats wanted more. In 2009 the directive was expanded to include all appliances that “can impact natural resources.” All the intrusion and regulation are justified by the need to “protect our climate”.
Last October I wrote about how the EU was gearing up to restrict household vacuum cleaners. Next in line are coffee machines.
The Austrian daily Der Standard here reports that a new European eco-design directive will switch off coffee machines already after five minutes. The directive will go into effect on January 1, 2015. Commercial coffee makers will be exempted.
Already harsh criticism is mounting. Some German conservative politicians say that the EU “should focus more on really important issues.” Moreover, the German business association UV Nord criticizes the “regulation madness” of the EU.
But the EU commission defends the move, claiming that it does not regulate the coffee machines in general, but rather only their warming function.
Der Standard writes:
The manufacturers can decide whether they wish to allow the consumers to decide if they want to deactivate the automatic switch-off function of the hot-plate function.”