Standby Power Home Page has a lot of interesting and helpful information about power consumption of electronic devices (TVs, DVD players, computers etc.) left in “standby” mode. Even has a link through to some NZ information here.
Standby mode is one of those real “convenience vs consumption” issues. The convenience of being able to turn the TV on remotely results in energy being consumed regardless of whether its being used. Making devices “want” to be in standby mode rather than being powered on and off completely (i.e. doing that too much might shorten life span) just buys into energy consumption – in standby mode or by having to buy a new product earlier because of shortened life span by power cycling. While a VHS might need to be on for taping programmes and the fridge keeps on cooling things like TVs, dishwashers and DVD players don’t need to be.