On February 13, 2024, Administrative Law Judge, Steven L. Fine of the DOE's Office of Hearings and Appeals (OHA) issued an Initial Agency Decision under the DOE's Procedures for Administrative Adjudication of Civil Penalty Actions (the Administrative Procedures).

The Energy Policy and Conservation Act (EPCA) established water and energy conservation standards for a variety of covered products, including large diameter ceiling fans. The DOE Energy Conservation Regulations implementing the EPCA require that manufacturers of covered products submit reports to DOE certifying that the covered product complies with the ECPA's conservation standards before they begin distributing it in commerce in the United States. The Regulations further provide for the assessment of civil penalties for noncompliance with this requirement. 
Under the regulations, the General Counsel may initiate a civil penalty action by issuing a notice of proposed civil penalty (NPCP) to a manufacturer who has failed to comply with the regulations, notifying them of the DOE's intent to access a civil penalty. That manufacturer can elect to either comply with the NPCP or have a hearing before an Administrative Law Judge. If the NPCP recipient fails to respond to the NPCP, the regulations require the General Counsel to refer the civil penalty action to an Administrative Law Judge for a hearing. The DOE has issued the Administrative Procedures to provide procedural guidance for those hearings. 

On August 23, 2023, the DOE's Office of the Assistant General Counsel for Enforcement (OAGCE) issued a NPCP to a manufacturer, Kale Environmental Technology (Shanghai) Corporation, alleging that it had distributed three basic models of large diameter ceiling fans (the Subject Models) into commerce in the United States without having certified that they met the ECPA's conservation standard. On November 22, 2023, after the manufacturer failed to respond to the NPCP, the OAGCE filed an amended Complaint with OHA alleging that the manufacturer had introduced three models of large diameter ceiling fans into commerce in the United States without having certified that the Subject Models met the ECPA's conservation standard and seeking an assessment of a civil penalty in the amount of $1,780,470. OHA's Director appointed an Administrative Law Judge to conduct a hearing under the Administrative Procedures. 
The Administrative Law Judge found that the allegations in the Complaint were valid, and that the manufacturer violated the Energy Policy and Conservation Act by knowingly distributing the three basic models of large diameter ceiling fans in the United States for at least 1,095 days without first certifying that they met the applicable energy conservation standard, in violation of the regulations . The Administrative Law Judges decision recommended that the manufacturer be accessed a civil penalty of $1,780,470. (OHA Case No. EEE-24-0003, Fine)