Six years ago, President Bush signed a federal energy bill phasing out energy-wasting light bulbs on a staggered schedule to ensure a smooth and successful transition to more efficient bulbs – and eventually save Americans $13 billion on their annual energy bills. All of the major lighting companies, including GE, Philips and Sylvania, support the changes and have upgraded their supply chains to produce the energy-savings bulbs. On January 1, the next chapter begins when the old, inefficient 40- and 60-watt bulbs, which represent over half the market, no longer can be manufactured or imported into the United States.
Energy efficiency plays a ‘non-sexy’ but very important part in our Victory Scenario. And lighting is important if you know that 30%+ of an office utility bill goes to lighting. Also, if we all replace one incandescent light bulb for a CFL or LED light, we can save the electricity use of 1.3 million households. And I bet you have more than one light in your house. The new standards eventually will save as much electricity as is generated by 30 large coal-burning power plants – and the associated pollution that harms our health and contributes to climate change – every single year.
The energy standards requiring improved efficiency have led to more lighting innovation over the past five years than we saw during the 100-plus years since Edison invented the light bulb! you can now buy any size and fitting and type with no more flickering, instant light power and more in just about any bulb. See the chart below for what you can use for the replacements that you are going to make before the new year comes around (right?!)
Some things to know when shopping for a new light bulb:
- Not all CFLs and LEDs are created equally. To ensure you are getting a good one, only buy those that have the ENERGY STAR® label. These not only save you energy but will also perform well over time.
- CFLs and LEDs last 10 to 25 times longer, respectively. Even though they might cost more to buy, they will save lots of money over their lifetime as well as prevent the need to replace each of your light bulbs every year.
- Light bulbs come in different flavors. If you want the light to look just like it did with your old incandescent, buy one that says “warm white.” Those that say “daylight” or “cool white” will have a much whiter, almost bluish white light, which many consumers may not like.
- If you want a dimmable bulb, buy an LED.
Bottom line, our nation’s switch toward more efficient light bulbs is well under way and the shift from the 40- and 60-watt bulbs should go without a hitch. The manufacturers and retailers have really stepped up to the plate and we now have a great energy-savings bulb on the shelf ready for every socket in your home.
reproduced from the energy collective