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State to set energy efficiency standards for video game consoles

April 01, 2013|By Marc Lifsher
  • California is considering setting energy efficiency standards for video game consoles and 14 other products. Above, a wireless controller for the Sony PlayStation 3.
California is considering setting energy efficiency standards for video… (Kiyoshi Ota / Bloomberg )

SACRAMENTO -- California’s energy efficiency regulators are are setting their sights on a new batch of products.

After decades of requiring that appliances, furnaces, air conditioners and big-screen televisions use ever less power, officials are now looking at more devices: video game consoles, set-top cable boxes, computers, various types of lighting and pool and spa pumps and motors.

“The simple fact is energy efficiency saves consumers money,” said Andrew McAllister, a member of the California Energy Commission. “Since 1978, energy efficiency standards have saved California ratepayers $74 billion in electricity costs.”

Quiz: Why are California gas prices so high? 

The commission is starting the latest round of crafting efficiency standards by gathering information on 15 new products to make sure they consider the most up-to-date data.

Manufacturers, led by the Consumer Electronics Assn., say they hope the commission will adopt “a new collaborative process” and will be less “inflexible” than they’ve been in the past.

The standards, which would be mandatory, are expected to be voted on in 2014 at the earliest and would take effect in 2015 or later, the commission said.

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