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California to ban big screen tv’s

The “guvernator” is leading California where no state has dared before. In a world first, big screen plasma televisions are to be banned in California because they use too much energy.  Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger has given his backing to the move which would prohibit the sale of TV sets more than 40 inches wide.

California’s utilities and environmental groups had urged state energy regulators to ban the most power-hungry televisions from stores as a way to lower electricity demand.

A rule before the California Energy Commission would impose the first energy-efficiency requirements for flat-screen televisions, a mandatory standard that is expected to be copied by other states.

“The goal here is a simple one,” Noah Horowitz, a scientist at the Natural Resources Defense Council, told commissioners at a hearing on Tuesday.

“We want to ensure that every TV sold in California is an efficient one,” Horowitz said.
A vote on the standard could come as early as next month.

Some manufacturers argue a mandatory power standard would hamper innovation, limit consumer choice and hurt California electronics retailers.

Energy commissioners say the rule could play a key role in reducing electricity use as consumers buy larger TVs. Watching TV accounts for about 10% of a home’s electricity use and about 2% of California’s total electricity usage. If left unchecked, the amount of electricity used by TVs is projected to rise by 8% a year. The LCD and plasma high definition sets can use as much as three times the power of smaller cathode ray models.

Under the rule, all TVs sold in California starting in 2013 would have to meet recently strengthened guidelines under the federal Energy Star program.

Doug Johnson, senior director of technology policy at the Consumer Electronics Association, said the commission’s cost savings were overly optimistic and relied on data that fails to show the advancements made in TVs in recent years.

Via Times of India