Pay TV set-top boxes to get greener

New energy-efficiency targets for pay TV PVRs in 2010

Australia's subscription television set-top boxes will be governed by more stringent energy-efficiency standards from 1 January 2010. Providers including Foxtel and Austar have reached an agreement with the government to improve the energy efficiency of their subscription television tuners and to consider phasing out older, less efficient products.

In Sydney today, federal environment minister Peter Garrett announced the agreement. “In Australia, pay TV subscriber numbers are on the rise; additional functionality is increasing energy use and set-top boxes are staying on for longer," Garrett said. "If we were to do nothing, energy use would more than double over the next 10 years.

“Improving the energy efficiency of pay TV set-top boxes is an area where we can achieve great results. Experts predict that this agreement will deliver energy savings of 1124 gigawatt hours, prevent 948 kilo-tonnes of carbon emissions — the equivalent of taking almost 28,000 cars off the road — and save pay TV subscribers $168 million in lower energy bills between 2009 and 2020.”

Foxtel's chief executive, Kim Williams, said that the company "has already invested substantially in set top box energy efficiency measures and in 2010 will introduce an auto-standby feature to further reduce environmental impact in our customer homes."

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