Arlington, Va. - The California Energy Commission (CEC) approved this week an Order for Instituted Rulemaking, which lays out additional products for which California will consider setting new minimum energy-efficiency standards.

This includes computer displays, video game consoles, imaging equipment, servers and set-top boxes.

The CEC has established energy-efficiency mandates in the past that have forced manufacturers to alter development or stop sales to California of CE products, such as flat-panel televisions. Consumer electronics manufacturers and retailers have complained that rulemaking imposed in California ultimately impacts how products are designed for the rest of the country.

Predictably, the action drew the immediate objections from the Consumer Electronics Association (CEA).

"California should not distinguish itself as the enemy of innovation. We continue to be concerned about how regulations are being justified and supported by the California Energy Commission," said Gary Shapiro, CEA president and CEO. "The CEC's approach, which focuses on setting artificial limits on consumer products, threatens to stifle innovation and economic growth within an industry already on the vanguard of energy efficiency. CEA supports programs defining energy usage consistently and conveying such information to consumers.

Shapiro said further CEC technology mandates could threaten innovation in the areas of IT, the Internet, the Cloud, entertainment and broadband, adding that the board's energy-efficiency guidelines for California (and consequently the rest of the country) are "based on flawed justifications, as we have witnessed in three CEC rulemakings to date."

Shapiro asked California to work with the CEA "on proven approaches to sustainability, such as encouraging innovation in the field of e-cycling, meeting green product standards, and educating policymakers and consumers alike on energy efficiency trends and savings opportunities."

The Natural Resources Defense Council, which is an environmental action group, said in a statement that the CEC proposed energy and environmental efficiency mandates offer potential energy, environmental and economic savings that "are quite compelling.  If all of these standards are passed, Californians will save approximately $1.5 billion per year in the form of lower electric bills."
Release Date: 
2012-03-15 16:12:49
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Abstract Web: 
Arlington, Va. - The California Energy Commission (CEC) approved this week an Order for Instituted Rulemaking, which lays out additional products for which California will consider setting new minimum energy-efficiency standards.
Article Type: 
News
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