For Immediate Release: November 18, 2009
Media Contact: Adam Gottlieb - 916-654-4989

California Approves New
Energy Efficient TV Regulations

First in the Nation Standard Will Save Consumers $8.1 Billion Over 10 Years

Sacramento – In an historic and unanimous 5-0 vote, the California Energy Commission today approved the nation's first energy efficiency standards for televisions. When these standards are implemented in 2011, new TVs sold in California will be the most energy efficient in the nation. After ten years, the commission estimates the regulations will save $8.1 billion in energy costs and save enough energy to power 864,000 single-family homes.

"The real winners of these new TV energy efficiencies are California consumers who will be saving billions of dollars and conserving energy while preserving their choice to buy any size or type of TV. Californians buy four million televisions each year and they deserve the most energy efficient models available," said Energy Commission Chairman Karen Douglas.

The technology neutral standards mandate that new televisions sold in California should consume 33 percent less electricity by 2011 and 49 percent less electricity by 2013. The standards affect only those TVs with a screen size 58 inches or smaller. For example, a 42-inch screen would consume 183 watts or less by 2011 and 115 watts or less by 2013. Pacific Gas & Electric estimates that over a decade the standards will reduce CO2 emissions by three million metric tons.

More than 1,000 TV models on the market today already meet the 2011 standards and cost no more than less-efficient sets. The regulations will not affect existing televisions that consumers already own or the TVs currently on retail store shelves. Stores will not be prohibited from selling existing stock of older televisions after the standards go into effect.

The Energy Commission began working on TV energy efficiency standards in January 2007. Since then, the Commission's staff collaborated with a variety of stakeholders including major statewide utility companies, the environmental community, TV industry groups and retailers, and consumer groups in an open public process to develop these regulations. Supporters include: Pacific Gas & Electric, San Diego Gas & Electric, Southern California Edison, Sacramento Municipal Utility District, the Natural Resources Defense Council, Union of Concerned Scientists, Environment California, California League of Conservation Voters, Sierra Club of California, Environmental Defense Fund, Center for Energy Efficiency and Renewable Technologies, Vizio, 3M, Agoura Technologies, and the LCD TV Association.

California's per capita electricity use has remained flat for the past 30 years compared to the rest of the nation which has increased its energy consumption by 40 percent. Recently named the nation's most energy efficient state by the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy (ACEEE), California has a distinguished 30-year track record of protecting consumers through cost-effective energy efficiency standards and has saved California households and businesses $56 billion during that time.

Created by the Legislature in 1974, the California Energy Commission is the state's primary energy policy and planning agency. The Energy Commission has five major responsibilities: forecasting future energy needs and keeping historical energy data; licensing thermal power plants 50 megawatts or larger; promoting energy efficiency through appliance and building standards; developing energy technologies and supporting renewable energy; and planning for and directing state response to energy emergency. Members of the Energy Commission are Chairman Karen Douglas; Vice Chair James D. Boyd; and Commissioners Jeffrey Byron; Julia Levin, Dr. Arthur H. Rosenfeld.

# # #