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California screenin': Majority of residents oppose big-screen TV ban

California has long been at the leading edge of energy conservation, for better and, sometimes, for worse. Case in point: The California Energy Commission has proposed set power-usage limits on television sets that manufacturers would have to meet in order to sell those TVs in the state.

California has long been at the leading edge of energy conservation, for better and, sometimes, for worse. Case in point: The California Energy Commission has proposed set power-usage limits on television sets that manufacturers would have to meet in order to sell those TVs in the state. If adopted, the limits would effectively prevent any plasma HDTV larger than 60-inches using current technology from being commercially available in the Golden State.

Needless, mom-and-pop TV shops in California aren't too happy with the idea, and a recent survey conducted by Zogby International suggests a majority of residents think such regulations go too far. That may not be entirely shocking, but what's somewhat surprising is that the percentage is lower than you might think: 57 percent oppose the proposal, which means more than two in five Californians agree with the idea that large TVs shouldn't be sold in the state.

While this feels like regulatory zeal gone a little too far, the green revolution is having an impact on HDTV manufacturing. LCDs and even plasmas have become more energy efficient, thanks in part to more stringent requirements for Energy Star certification. And as LED-backlit LCD HDTVs reach mainstream prices and OLED sets become more prevalent, their energy efficiency will save even more power than conventional LCDs. (I don't suppose we'll be seeing a cash-for-clunkers style promotion for less power-thirsty HDTVs, however.)

Do you believe large-screen TVs consume too much power, and therefore should be commercially unavailable if they can't reach energy-usage limits? Answer the poll question below and let us know your thoughts in the TalkBack section.

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