Special Blog Action Day Edition!

blog action day Blog Action Day is here! That’s right, today is Blog Action Day, the day that bloggers are encouraged to get one issue out there in the minds of all their readers.  This years topic is the environment, and the goal is for every blog to post one article about the environment today.  Given how important our environment is, we decided that we’d spend the entire day writing about it, particularly how the technology that we use affects the environment.  Today’s Microsoft Monday feature was put on the sidelines while we focus all of our attention on different things that all of us can do to help the environment and make this awesome planet a better place to live. To start the day off, we’re going to take a look at how much power your TV consumes. You might be surprised, so lets take a look!

When it comes to TVs, according to CNET, technology and size matter in terms of energy consumption. In general, the average plasma TV consumes much more energy than a rear-projection TV or an LCD or CRT TV. If we were to order the power consumption between the different technologies from high to low, plasma would top the list with an average of 328 watts, and the rear-projection TV would be next consuming  208 watts on average. If you want to consume the least amount of energy possible, you’ll want an LCD which consumes 193 watts on average, or a CRT TV which consumes 146 watts of power on average.

Taking this further, lets take a look at the power consumption of different types and sizes of TVs, and the estimated annual energy cost for each. This information comes from a guide that CNet put together with a comparison of 54 different TVs.

Annual Energy Costs Associated with Different TVs.

  Rear-Projection LCD CRT Plasma
27″-32″ n/a $44.18 $31.17 n/a
33″-42″ n/a $67.61 $60.00 $81.98
43″-52″ n/a $75.89 n/a $107.72
53″-62″ $64.87 n/a n/a $143.03
63″-72″ $90.45 n/a n/a n/a

As part of CNet’s guide mentioned above, they calculated a “watts-per-square-inch” rating for the four major technologies used to make TV’s:

  • Rear Projector: 0.14 watt per square inch
  • LCD: 0.29 watt per square inch
  • Plasma: 0.34 watt per square inch
  • CRT: 0.34 watt per square inch

With Plasma TVs using a considerable amount of energy compared to some of the other technologies, it’s no surprise that these types of TVs are in danger of being banned in Australia. According to an Australian News Source (ABC News), there’s a growing demand for Plasma and LCD TVs, but many of them won’t meet the requirements should the Australian government implement a six-star rating system for energy efficiency. If this rating system get implemented, “all current plasma TVs and many LCDs could be removed from sale by 2011.”

So what does this mean for you? Well, it depends on the country you live in! Eventually I could see many more countries implementing an energy efficiency rating system to help as far as conservation goes like Australia is hoping to do. If other countries were to follow Australia’s steps, we could see  TV manufacturers developing energy efficient TVs to replace the current plasma and LCD options.

Considering it’s blog action day with a focus on the environment, now may be a great time to take a look at your other technology devices like a DVD player or your Xbox 360 or PS3 and determine if the power it consumes makes it a device worth keeping. And finally, if you’re TV shopping, consider purchasing an LCD TV over a Plasma TV.  Aside from the fact that plasmas consume more energy, they also don’t last as long as an LCD (based upon the lamp/backlight in the TV). When it comes to all of your tech toys and in particular, your TV, remember that the technology that it’s built upon, and the size of it do matter if you want to help the environment and save energy!

This article was written in part for Blog Action Day.