The Federal Trade Commission today proposed requiring that EnergyGuide labels appear on televisions sold in the United States so consumers shopping for TVs will have more information about the energy use of different models. The familiar yellow-and-black rectangular labels currently are required on many consumer appliances, such as washing machines and refrigerators, and provide useful information such as the estimated yearly cost of operating the appliance and the cost range compared to other similar models.
In March 2009, the FTC issued a notice seeking comments on whether EnergyGuide labels should be required on a range of consumer electronic products, including televisions. Based on the comments received, the agency now proposes to require the labels on televisions sold in the United States to help consumers make better purchasing decisions. The FTC is seeking specific comments on issues such as the need for these labels; how the energy usage of televisions should be determined; the location, format, and content of energy disclosures; and the timing of the proposed labeling requirements. The agency is not proposing labeling requirements for other consumer electronics at this time, but seeks further comment on test procedures and other issues.
The Commission will hold a public meeting in the near future to gain additional insight into these issues.
The Commission vote approving the Federal Register notice announcing the proposal was 4-0. It will be published shortly, and can be found now on the FTC’s Web site and as a link to this press release. Public comments on the proposed rule are due by May 14, 2010, and instructions on how to submit them can be found in the text of the notice.
The FTC works for the consumer to prevent fraudulent, deceptive, and unfair business practices and to provide information to help spot, stop, and avoid them. To file a complaint in English or Spanish, click: http://www.ftc.gov/ftc/complaint.shtm or call 1-877-382-4357. The FTC enters Internet, telemarketing, identity theft, and other fraud-related complaints into Consumer Sentinel, a secure, online database available to more than 1,800 civil and criminal law enforcement agencies in the U.S. and abroad. For free information on a variety of consumer topics, click http://ftc.gov/bcp/consumer.shtm.