Though it seems a dangerous proposition to come between people and their TVs, California's Energy Commission is looking to do exactly that; for a good cause. According to the Commission, consumer electronics - including TVs - use 10 percent of the average household electricity.
The state is proposing rules that would require all television sets sold in California to use 50 percent less energy by 2013. If approved, they would start regulating TVs in January, 2011.
The Commission is facing strong opposition from the Consumer Electronics Association (CEA), which is afraid of the dent the regulations might put in plasma TV sales. Plasma displays can use up to 30 percent more energy per square inch than liquid crystal displays. Fortunately, plasma sets are a dying breed -- their dwindling numbers only account today for 10 percent of the market versus 77 percent for LCD sets. CRT sets are generally less efficient than LCD models as well.
Adam Gottlieb, a spokesman for the California Energy Commission, says that the new regulations won't ban any specific sales. He states, "You’re still able to buy the 60-inch that you want and it’s not affecting what’s in your house."
While it expected that such a move would be met with hesitance, the industry appears technologically prepared for the shift. Some LCD-heavy companies like Vizio are actually cheering the move, as is the LCD TV Association. Laggard companies will simply have to get their act together, or lose business, it seems.
With 4 million sets sold in California annually the savings in carbon and other pollutants by even minor efficiency increases will be big. The new regulations will also call for more power efficient digital video recorders, DVD players, and cable boxes. The Commission says that by 2013, enough power could be saved by the regulations to power 864,000 homes for a year.
The regulations will be voted on by the Commission at the summer's end.
California's Energy Commission recently received a go ahead from President Obama to enact higher fuel economy standards, as well. It is waiting on the EPA to review its petition and allow it to take another impressive step in its expansive efforts to cut the state's carbon footprint
written by Fred, June 30, 2009
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