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Water Efficiency Labelling and Standards (WELS) scheme

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Information Publication Scheme

The Water Efficiency Labelling scheme Regulator (the WELS Regulator) is an agency subject to the Freedom of Information Act 1982 (FOI Act) and therefore is required to comply with the Information Publication scheme established pursuant to Part 2 of the FOI Act.

In particular, section 8(2) of the FOI Act imposes an obligation on the WELS Regulator to publish the following information on its website:

  • an agency plan which describes how the WELS Regulator proposes to comply with the Information Publication scheme requirements
  • details of the WELS Regulator's structure
  • details of the agency's functions, including its decision making powers and other powers affecting members of the public
  • details of appointments of officers
  • the WELS Regulator's annual reports
  • details of arrangements for members of the public to comment on specific policy proposals for which the WELS Regulator is responsible
  • information in documents to which the agency routinely gives access in response to requests made under Part II of the FOI Act
  • information that the WELS Regulator routinely provides to the Parliament in response to requests and orders from the Parliament
  • details of an officer who can be contacted about access to the WELS Regulator's information or documents under the FOI Act, and
  • the WELS Regulator's operational information.

The WELS Regulator publishes the documents required to be published under the Information Publication Scheme on its website.

Agency Plan

Section 8(1) of the FOI Act imposes an obligation on the WELS Regulator to publish an agency plan which describes how the WELS Regulator proposes to comply with the Information Publication scheme requirements. The agency plan is required to set out the following information:

  • the information the WELS Regulator proposes to publish under the Information Publication Scheme;
  • how, and to whom, the WELS Regulator proposes to publish the information; and
  • other steps the WELS Regulator will take to comply with the Information Publication Scheme requirements.

Download the Agency Plan

What we do

The WELS Regulator is established under the Water Efficiency Labelling scheme Act 2005 (the WELS Act) and is the Secretary of the Department of Sustainability, Environment, Water, Population and Communities (the department). The WELS Regulator is responsible for monitoring and enforcing the WELS scheme and is committed to ensuring the integrity and credibility of the WELS scheme. The WELS team is located within the Environment Quality Division of the department.

The WELS Regulator and authorised delegates has a wide range of powers and resources to make WELS work, including:

  • registering WELS products
  • tasking inspectors to monitor compliance and/or investigate alleged breaches of the WELS Act
  • imposing significant fines and penalties for breaches of the WELS Act
  • deregistering a product, and
  • advertising convictions.

The WELS Regulator has the option to use administrative actions and education as an alternative to legal action, to help manufacturers, importers and retailers to meet their legal obligations under the WELS Act. Where a cooperative solution is not possible, the WELS Regulator can act to impose penalties and enforcement provisions outlined in Part 7 of the WELS Act.

Reports

Information published under this heading includes:

Freedom of Information (including routinely requested information and disclosure log)

Information about how to make a FOI request and the address, telephone number and email address for a contact officer who can be contacted about access to the WELS Regulator's information and documents can be obtained on the WELS Regulator's Freedom of Information page. In addition, information that has been released in response to a request for access to information made under the FOI Act can be obtained from the department's disclosure log (link is external).

Operational information

The WELS Regulator publishes on its website a wide range of information used by the WELS Regulator to assist in the exercise of its functions and powers. Information is also available under the WELS Regulator's publication page.

Queries relating to the WELS scheme should be directed to 1800 218 478 or by email to wels@environment.gov.au (link sends e-mail).