Friday, April 10, 2009

Hey California! The Government Is Coming For Your New Big Screen TV!

The Orange County Register reports that in an attempt to reduce the emission of greenhouse gases, the California Energy Commission is considering banning the sale of big-screen TV sets that don't meet new, higher energy efficiency standards. Critics say the news standards could take 25 percent of televisions, most 40 inches or larger sets, off the market.

By 2011, the commission wants all large-screen TVs to use 33 percent less power. By 2013, sets must consume 49 percent less power. The Sacramento bureaucrats say the regulations will reduce global warming and save consumers $18 to $30 a year.

Considering that most manufacturers already work to meet voluntary Energy Star standards, it is questionable how much more state agencies can demand from manufacturers without forcing them to pass on these added costs to consumers, which means more expensive TVs.

And as Steve Titch at Reason points out:
There is also a huge question about how such a law would be enforced. Many California consumers would simply choose to purchase non-compliant TVs on the Internet, or drive to stores in nearby Nevada, Arizona or Oregon. As a result, local California-based retailers, who provide jobs and income to state residents, stand to lose the most from the ban.

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