The eco-friendly state of California has just passed a unanimous vote requiring device manufacturers to ship energy-efficient handset chargers starting 2013. This new requirement applies to all cellphones, tablets, and hundreds of other electronic devices. The new law was passed by the California Energy Commission with a 3-0 vote despite objections from electronics makers.
The CEC says that these power-sapping chargers waste as much as 60 percent of the electricity they consume. Many of these chargers also continue to draw power from an outlet even when a device is not attached. There is an estimated 170 million of these so called "vampire" chargers and they account for up to 13 percent all the power used in California.
The CEC believes that this new regulation can save enough electricity to power 350,000 homes. It's expected to save residential and commercial electricity customers a total of $306 million each year. The new standard will take effect February 1, 2013.