Californians May Say Goodbye to Plasma Screens

Reader Contribution by Madeline Hyden

While they provide a beautiful, clear picture, plasma screen televisions are a huge detriment to the environment, and California could be the first state to ban them. Earlier this month state regulators in California began drafting a plan to remove all plasma screen televisions from retail shelves. Plasma screen and LCD TVs gluttonize electricity and account for 10 percent of all Californians’ electric bills, according to the Los Angeles Times. The new rules, which are expected to go into effect by mid-2009, would only give consumers the option of choosing a more energy-efficient model.

Last year California was ranked number one in energy efficiency by the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy. Officials say the standards, once fully in place, would reduce the state’s annual energy needs by an amount equivalent to the power consumed by 86,400 homes. The LA Times says that during peak TV viewing times, such as during the Super Bowl, the electricity used to power those TVs is the same amount used to power the San Onofre nuclear power station at full capacity. 

But California isn’t the only place banning plasma screens from stores. The European Union is also putting a ban on certain energy-draining plasma screen televisions. The Daily Mail says the legislation should pass this spring and will remove the most energy-consuming televisions from store shelves and will place a label on all other TVs encouraging energy efficient choices.