Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Ban On Light Bulbs - Boy Have I Been In The Dark

I'm sitting here with my dad the other night and he asks me if I want a three way light bulb for the lamp at my desk. I say no, because I like a lot of light at my desk so I can see and I didn't see much use for a three way light bulb if I just always leave it on high. Well, a few minutes later he goes out and comes back in with a three way squiggly florescent light bulb. I say I don't think that will even fit in the lamp. He says he'll put the light in the lamp.

Then he tells me there's a federal light bulb law, that starting next year you won't be able to buy regular light bulbs any more. I seriously thought he was BS'ing me. Then he started talking about how SC was fighting to prevent the law. So I get to looking...

Sure enough the government has done it again! The bill was originally named the Clean Energy Act of 2007. The name was then changed at some point to the Energy Independence and Security Act 2007. First off, thank you George Bush! *MAJOR SARCASM*. Secondly, What the heck do light bulbs have to do with security?

I'm all for saving energy, but I want to see while doing it.

The plan as I understand it is that the manufacturers must produce a better bulb or no bulb. These are the cut off dates.

Dec 31, 2011 is the last day manufacturer's can distribute 100 watt incandescent bulbs (regular light bulbs that we are all used too). Start stocking up now!

Jan 1, 2013  is the last day 75 watt incandescent bulbs can be manufactured, and
Jan 1, 2014 is the final day to manufacture 60 & 40 incandescent watt bulbs.

This is supposed to be the equivalent of taking 17 million cars off the road.  So this all sounds good.

My questions. Is the only option for light bulbs theses squiggly funky florescent bulbs. Are we left with no other options? Are the US plants not going to come up with a better option? It doesn't sound like it.

I looked at the bulb package that my dad brought in to see where it was made. The package has three different languages all over it, very little English. Finally found it, made in China. Go figure. Don't get me wrong I have nothing against the Chinese, but damn it America get it together, must everything be made in another country? No wonder so many people are out of work.

All this makes me wonder where my current light bulbs were manufactured. I go into the light bulb cabinet, pull out four different kinds of lights, all four happen to be made by GE. Two of the four appear to be made in Cleveland, Ohio, one was made in China and the other in Mexico. Go GE send all those jobs to other countries.

Back to the squiggly light package reading one of about three short paragraphs that are in English. The package says: Do not use with emergency exit fixtures, emergency lights, exit lights, dimmers, photo controls or electric timers.... May cause interference with radios, televisions, wireless telephones and remote controls.

So in an emergency you can no longer have back up lighting? I thought dimmers, photo controls and electric timers where all to save energy, yet you can't use these lights with them? I guess that means I shouldn't use them with my sound activated devices either, also for saving energy. Yep, sound activated device package says for use with incandescent bulbs. Too bad for people that use electric timers when they go on vacation and no more mood lighting without dimmers.

This may explain why every time I walk in the kitchen with my cordless phone I loose reception. It's the florescent lights. I now have the problem at my desk too. Oh, yea!

Then there are the disposal laws. Big bold letters. Manage in accordance with disposal laws. Nope you can't throw these florescent lights in the trash can in some states. And you'd better make sure not to break a florescent bulb or you'll have yourself a toxic event. You'll need to break out the tyvek suit, mask and gloves. Seriously! These lights contain mercury and the EPA has issued special cleanup guidelines for them. This sounds like something you want to be around right? Great for kids and animals.

This is exactly what we need a more expensive, ugly, toxic, not as bright light to make our world better. The package may say the wattage is the same, but the lighting is not. These florescent bulbs have a funky glow.

Just found this, it explains the package differences above. GE Closes - Last Incandescent Light Bulb Plant, Jobs Sent To China.

Easy Bake Oven has had to redesign their ovens with a heating element, instead of the old 100-watt light bulb. It's now called the Easy Bake Ultimate Oven. I don't know but I'm thinking a heating element is going to burn worse than a light bulb when you touch it.

And what about my chandelier, guess it will become very strange looking with squiggly lights, and I'll probably have to remove the lamp shades on it to fit the stupid ass squiggly bulb. Which really means I'll have to buy a new chandelier.

Yep the government is trying to help save me money again. Why is it when they try to help it always costs me more money. They need to stop!

Now the good news is that South Carolina and a couple of other states are fighting this law, and there are some Senators and Representatives in Washington trying to get this bill repealed. Hopefully they can pull this off.

How much money will this law cost you, instead of save you?

Oh, and I still don't know what light bulbs and security have to do with each other.

Copyright © 2011 Virtualpatti. All Rights Reserved.


  1. That's just the start of it!

    More on the health risks with CFLs, with case references and documentation...
    not forgetting LEDs, also on the website, with research references:
    Lead, arsenic and other toxic LED content, home breakage and disposal concerns

    There's an irony there somewhere,
    banning simple safe known technology in favor of unknown and seemingly unsafe technology
    - normally of course products are banned for being unsafe to use (like lead paint).....

    It is a "ban":
    Temporarily allowed (2016 EU, 2020 USA) and unpopular Halogen etc
    incandescents are themselves more complex and costly and with a different whiter light, for marginal savings, compared to the simple, cheap, popular regular incandescent types.

  2. Thanks for the added info Panta Rei. Now we have fire risks added to the mix. Oh Yea!


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