The US Energy Department has made an agreement
with energy efficiency and electronic device groups to help conserve energy. The agreement includes new non-regulatory energy efficiency standards for set-top boxes used for pay-TV, with current targets set to improve efficiency by 10 to 45 percent by 2017, allowing more than 90 million US homes to collectively save more than $1 billion on their consumer energy bills each year.
Though it is a voluntary agreement, companies signing up for it include Comcast, DirecTV, Dish Network, Time Warner Cable, AT&T, Verizon, Cox, Charter, Cablevision, Bright House Networks, and CenturyLink, as well as a number of manufacturers, reports The Verge
. Energy efficiency groups such as the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC), the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy (ACEEE), and the Appliance Standards Awareness Project (ASAP) have also signed up.
"As Americans increasingly rely on more electronic devices and gadgets, managing energy consumption is both an environmental and economic priority for consumers and industry alike," advised CEO and president of NCTA Michael Powell. Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) called the agreement "a big win for nearly every American who pays a monthly television bill because experts tell me that federal standards could not have produced this much financial and energy savings by 2017."
Feinstein put the potential savings into perspective, advising that it would eliminate the need for three power plants and prevent 5 million tons of CO2 emissions per year.