Computers and monitors are targets of latest energy-efficiency rules
LA Times, March 15, 2015
California regulators are intensifying efforts to wring every possible electron out of common household devices.
This time, the focus is on cutting the use of electricity by power-hungry computers and monitors.
The California Energy Commission just released the latest in a long line of energy-efficiency standards that made the Golden State a world leader in saving electricity. Past targets have included refrigerators, air conditioners, flat-screen televisions, battery chargers and dozens of other appliances and electronic devices.
The commission is writing proposed minimum power consumption standards that it estimates would save 2,702 gigawatt hours a year of electricity. That’s roughly the combined usage of the cities of Long Beach, Anaheim, Huntington Beach and Riverside. Utility customers could shave a total of $430 million off their annual electric bills, or about $20 a year for a household that owns one desktop computer, one laptop and one monitor.
Computers and monitors are among the leading users of energy in California and “spend roughly half their time … on but not being used.” Commissioner Andrew McAllister said.
Boosting efficiency is a good deal, he said. For example, a $2 investment in manufacturing a more power-stingy desktop computer would save $69 over five years, he said.