Flat-screen-TVs can contribute to global warming?

For months now, I’ve been seriously thinking, even formulating a budget that will enable me to buy my very first flat-screen TV. But after being alerted by a friend to this news story on The Guardian, I’m having to start second-thoughts:

Environment: Climate risk from flat-screen TVs

The rising demand for flat-screen televisions could have a greater impact on global warming than the world’s largest coal-fired power stations, a leading environmental scientist warned yesterday.

Manufacturers use a greenhouse gas called nitrogen trifluoride to make the televisions, and as the sets have become more popular, annual production of the gas has risen to about 4,000 tonnes.

As a driver of global warming, nitrogen trifluoride is 17,000 times more potent than carbon dioxide, yet no one knows how much of it is being released into the atmosphere by the industry, said Michael Prather, director of the environment institute at the University of California, Irvine.

Ah the self-conflicts of having eco-friendly principles and living in a consumerist, hi-tech world. I’m going to look into this a little further, like when I go out window-shopping again for a flat-screen TV, I’m going to ask the dealers if they have any information about the TVs’ environmental ratings or any relevant information. Of course, I’ll go prowling the web for more information and see which manufacturer is concerned and has done something about this issue.

I’m a techno-geek, but I’m also a green geek, and since nitrogen triflouride is known to remain in the atmosphere for 550 years, I don’t want to dump that stuff up there and help destroy our planet. I just hope Samsung, because I got my eyes on their flat-screen TVs, is concerned and have done something about this issue, positively, instead of downplaying this scientific revelation.

It seems that a dSLR will be my newest gadget this year as getting a flat-screen TV has been pushed down my “to-buy” list of gadgets and stuff.

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