Theodore's World: Lightbulb Legislation????

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March 22, 2007

Lightbulb Legislation????

Bill to Ban Regular Light Bulbs Introduced in House full article

A Democratic lawmaker has introduced a bill that would ban the sale of traditional incandescent light bulbs - which are less energy-efficient, prompting claims that they contribute to "global warming" - one day after a colleague told a press conference that legislating a ban would be a "last choice."

As Cybercast News Service reported last week, Rep. Don Manzullo (R-Ill.) and Sen. Mark Pryor (D-Ark.) held a news conference Wednesday calling for more efficient lighting options, and Manzullo said "the last thing we want to do is force legislation down people's throats."

One day later, Rep. Jane Harman (D-Calif.) introduced legislation that would set target dates for certain types of light bulbs to be prohibited for sale in the United States.

Democrat Harman calls the bill :

"an important first step toward making every household, business and public building in America more energy-efficient."

"This legislation, while a small step, could have an enormous impact," she said in a posting on the liberal Huffington Post blog. "And hopefully, it can help transform America into an energy-efficient and energy-independent nation."

An average traditional incandescent bulb based on a filament emits 12-15 lumens per watt (a measurement of the bulb's lighting output.) Harman's bill would require all bulbs to produce 60 lumens-per-watt by January 2012; 90 lumens-per-watt by January 2016; and 120 lumens-per-watt by January 2020.

On the same topic this is unbelievable! Look at this story...............

Broken light bulb sparks debate

BANGOR - Compact fluorescent lights, those swirly bulbs displacing the old incandescent type in many homes, have become the darlings of the energy-conscious crowd, thanks to their capacity to both fight global warming and lower utility bills.

But with more than a million bulbs sold in Maine, questions are being raised about whether consumers know enough about the special disposal and handling requirements that come with these well-documented energy-savers.

In one unusual case, a Prospect woman was told recently that it could cost $2,000 to clean up the mess left by a single shattered bulb.

Officials with the Maine Department of Environmental Protection have since said that such a costly cleanup is probably unnecessary. Most homeowners can safely dispose of broken bulbs without professional help, and most Maine towns offer bulb recycling options, the DEP said.

Maine law requires homeowners to recycle the bulbs as "universal waste" similar to certain batteries and used thermostats. Most towns accept universal waste at special locations or during specific household hazardous waste collection days.

Bridges’ trust in the new technology literally shattered this week when a minor incident with a loose bulb turned into a major headache. A bulb she was trying to rethread tumbled from her hands and broke on the carpeted floor of her daughter’s bedroom.

Remembering lessons from shop class about fluorescent bulbs, Bridges began calling around for advice on the proper cleanup procedure.

"I was nervous. Something about this gave me a bad feeling," Bridges said in an interview.

She called The Home Depot, where she bought the bulb, and was referred to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, which eventually referred her to the DEP’s environmental response team. A specialist who responded found mercury readings more than six times the state’s acceptable level at the spot of the broken bulb.

Readings a few feet from the spot where the bulb broke were within safe levels.

The specialist referred Bridges to an environmental cleanup company. The estimated cost, according to Bridges, was about $2,000.

"Save 40 cents a month on your electric bill, but it will cost you two grand to clean up?" Bridges said.

State officials, while careful not to downplay the overall threat posed by mercury, said the high levels found in the spot of the broken bulb would only be dangerous from long-term exposure.

Wild Thing's comment.......

You have GOT to be kidding me! So Harmon the Democrat Pinko-Commie lawmaker has introduced a bill about lightbulbs. Can't Harmon think of another way to kiss up to Gore, this is unreal.

Like lightbulbs are the biggest danger to the American people. These dems and their wimpy RINO friends are an absolute waste of humanity. Light bulbs are OK, we should have a bill to ban dim bulbs in Congress.

Politicians should be banned from sticking their fingers into the technology pie like this. They're not qualified to make such decisions, nevermind the fact that they're grossly overstepping the proper bounds on their power.

My understanding is that Florescent lights wont come on in really cold weather. I might be wrong about this, I am not positive.They would be worthless for outdoor use in the northern states.

Then of course the democrats will complain of the toxic waste from the florescent lightbulbs. And they will pass another bill to add like the cost of throwing them away will be very expensive if they have their way about it. They contain more Mercury than the regular bulbs, thus making them toxic waste and this kind of surcharge will lead to illegal dumping of the used bulbs.

A friend told me that if you put them in poorly ventilated fixtures that are typical for incandescent bulbs, they overheat and fail at a far shorter life than the incandescents they replace and can catch on fire.

Sooooo-- we get to pay for them over and over again. Very expensive in the first place, surcharge to dispose of them, and they don't work in large outdoor applications, especially in cold climates.

If this bill passes then I guess we can look for Light bulb disposal legislation coming.

How many Kennedys does it take to change a light bulb?


One to hold the bulb and two to drink until the room spins around.

Posted by Wild Thing at March 22, 2007 12:55 AM


Like there isn't anything more important than banning regular lightbulbs? Isn't it my choice to pick what kind of lightbulbs I use?
I do have a brain in my head and I know how to use it.
I'm not a child who needs guidance. I'm a grown woman who has been in my clothes for more than one dance and who's been around the block more than once--I can make my own decisions.
Just another way of pushing the socialist agenda.
As Scrooge once said, "BAH-Humbug!"

Posted by: Lynn at March 22, 2007 06:20 AM

Orwellian. Congress needs to turn out it's own lights and adjurn. They have already regulated our toilets. And, as usual, their regulations apply to everyone but themselves.

Posted by: TomR at March 22, 2007 06:39 AM

-New expensive energy efficient light bulbs mandated by law.

-People forced to spend money and buy new bulbs

-People start saving money on electric bills

-Utility companies loosing money because of newly mandated energy efficient bulbs

-Utility companies raise rates to compensate for lost revenues.

-American consumers take it in the shorts due to higher costs for light bulbs and electric rates.

-Al Gore pats self on back because he thinks he's saving environment.

Remember when unleaded gasoline was mandated? It actually costs more to produce leaded gas but once unleaded was mandated, the price of unleaded skyrocketed above leaded.

Posted by: BobF at March 22, 2007 07:28 AM

OMG, now these 'Nitwits' want to ban the light bulb. As WT pointed out there is a disposal problem with Flourescents, they contain Murcury, so I am sure the rules and regulations these Watt-Nannies want to impose on us will have the proper precedure written into the new law. So what is going to be the penalty for using a 100 watt incandescent ? First time is a warning then they shut your power off, what about all the portable generators, there are millions of them out there and they are real polluters.

But what about Industry, anywhere you have rotating machinery you can NOT use Flourescents, because of the strobe effect due to the frequency at which they operate. They create an illusion that the machine/motor is Not running when it is. A very dangerous condition for people who have to work around or near these things.

If they are so concerned about 'Global Warming' there is a simple solution and that is Nuclear Power plants. 2.2 pounds of a mass would create enough energy to burn a 100 watt light bulb, the edison type, for only 28 Million years.

We have the technology and the know how but we have politicians with no spine to use it. The Government has gotten to the point where they are governing with fear and scare tactics. What is the big thing with 'global warming' is ... WE ALL GONNA DIE...And Algore is the only one who can save us. ... B.S.

We were talking about our favorite seasons yesterday, ever turn a Flourescent on in a cold space or a garage in the middle of winter, they barely flicker, and seldom come on, unless you buy the HO (High Output) type which are rated for cold weather and they are expensive but even these HO types take a while to warm up and do not give the same light as they do in warmer weather. The 48 inch version, which is more practical for a homeowner, are almost twice as expensive as the 8 footers(industrial type). And the replacement bulbs are twice as expensive as the standard bulbs.

If they do go this route there will be a huge run on the Edison Lamp and I will be the first in line.

Posted by: Mark at March 22, 2007 08:08 AM

The cited incident was certinly an overreaction. CFLs do contain mercury, true. But not a great deal - the exposure from a single bulb wouldn't be enough to pose a hazard unless someone either ingested it, or was exposed for a prolonged time. Both of them rather unlikely. Its not a potential danger at all unless the bulb is actually broken, a fairly rare occurange.

True, bulbs should be taken to a disposal site equiped to handle them (not that anyone will obey this), but they fail so rarely its not a great inconvenience. I switched to CFLs about a year ago all through my house, and ive had only a single failure. Someone knocked their head on it.

"My understanding is that Florescent lights wont come on in really cold weather. I might be wrong about this, I am not positive.They would be worthless for outdoor use in the northern states."

It used to be a problem, along with slow warm-up times and a buzzing noise. But its much improved in modern lights.

One difference in the economics is that you have to shop for quality. With incandesents, one bulb is just like another. But with CFLs, if you look for the cheapest, you get what you pay for - low-quality electronics and poor construction. A good bulb will last longer, and not suffer from the abovementioned problems.

Another solution to this, as well as the industrial strobe, is to look at other types of lighting - LED lighting has comparable efficiency to CFLs, no flicker, works in all conditions, and has an *extremally* long life. Buy that bulb, and its likely to outlast you. The main downside is price, and a directional nature that makes them a bit awkward in domestic settings.

"A friend told me that if you put them in poorly ventilated fixtures that are typical for incandescent bulbs, they overheat and fail at a far shorter life than the incandescents they replace and can catch on fire."

This claim is completly false: While incandescents are able to handle a much higher temperature, the CFLs produce a lot less heat. Any light-fitting which allowed a CFL to get hot enough to pose a fire hazard would also allow an incandescent to do the same.

"If they are so concerned about 'Global Warming' there is a simple solution and that is Nuclear Power plants. 2.2 pounds of a mass would create enough energy to burn a 100 watt light bulb, the edison type, for only 28 Million years."

Even the enviromentalists are admitting this would be a good idea now - the anti-nuclear campaigners are finally realising this. But opposition comes from a new source now - security concerns. A lot of conservatives in particular worry that more nuclear plants means more chances for material to be lost or stolen, and the increased supply of experts would make it easier for a country trying to develop nuclear weapons to recruit scientists.

Its still a good idea though. And in another ten years, we might even see large-scale production of new plants in the US. Unfortunatly they take twenty years to build, and even then its more expensive than coal. I see nuclear as a long-term solution, but increased efficiency mandates as a way to reduce the damage until then.

Posted by: Suricou Raven at March 22, 2007 09:49 AM

That pisses me off -- I've already started using the new bulbs ... the local WalMart is pushing them. Out here in the boonies, electric rates are high. These environmental axxholes prefer force in as a principle.

I hope that atomic fusion is the answer -- fission is a stopgap measure. Storage of spent fuel will need to last virtually forever*** and just one big accident*** or terrorist attack .....

***nothing can go wrong (click) go wrong (click)go wrong (click)

Posted by: OINK at March 22, 2007 10:23 AM

Freaks like Algore are hell bent on putting us back into caves with their obsessive compulsive disorders that dictate they destroy all of man's progress, they are like the self mutilators that whittle away at themselves, fine as long as it's only them, and that they confine their DSM-IV-TR mental aberrations to themselves. CF lamps do not work well in cold environs, if they did municipalities all around the world would be using them for street lighting, they are better than the old fluorescents but still are lacking, I've found they aren't that good on the eyes for reading either. But isn't it just like a Democrat to throw out the baby with the bath water.

Posted by: Jack at March 22, 2007 11:06 AM

Jack -- So far the new bulbs work OK. I'm able to illuminate the hell out of the garage attic, where I'm prone to trip and fall on my ass. AND, without spinning the electric meter wheel out of its socket. Just because Dipstick is for it doesn't PROVE that it's wrong ... it just suggests that it is.

In Thailand, street lamps & highway lights are florescent -- takes some getting used to.

Posted by: OINK at March 22, 2007 11:17 AM

"TODAY IN HISTORY: 1903 Niagara Falls runs out of water because of a drought."

Global Warming

Posted by: OINK at March 22, 2007 11:23 AM

Jack: Street lights here use sodium lamps. They are the leaders for raw efficiency, by a long way. Unfortunatly, they produce a nasty monochromatic yellow that makes color perception impossible. Some streetlights use florescent lamps. None use incandescents though, as they would fail far too often - its expensive to send someone round with a cherry-picker.

You seem to have has some bad experiences with CFLs in the past. But my own experiences have been very good - I think you just have to find a good brand, and avoid the dirt-cheap ones that use low-quality electronics.

CFLs will do in almost all situations. The more expensive LEDs cover the rest. Incandescents have served well for a long time, but it seems they are going soon.

Posted by: Suricou Raven at March 22, 2007 01:33 PM

I suppose next will be mandated allergen-free lamp shades...
WTF!! All I can think is someone(cough*gore*cough) is making a lot of money with this scam.

Zinc, anyone?

Posted by: yankeemom at March 22, 2007 01:56 PM

I do use the new bulbs in my house and garage. I like them in my garage because I forget to turn the lights out at times and it's better to be using a total 40 watts instead of the 300 in incandescent bulbs I did use. But, it's my choice to use them, not the governments.

Posted by: BobF at March 22, 2007 02:47 PM

Al 'Frankenstein' Gore is resembling a Mel Brook's classic Young Frankenstein moment when Peter Boyle.......
(Frankensteeeen) was offered a cigar by blindman Gene Hackman, and a MATCH was lit !
And this would have been our 43rd president? There is a GOD! Happy Holy Season of Lent.
PS: He does resemble LERCH ADAMS on the Adams Family too, eh? But Al is more rigid than Lerch!

Posted by: darthcrUSAderworldtour07 at March 22, 2007 02:58 PM

I think I will stick with the Incandescents, they are 70 % efficient, meaning 70 watts of light and 30 watts of heat, use enough and you don't have to turn the heat on.

As long as they sell the Edison types I will buy them and the CFL's can rot at Lowes.

Posted by: Mark at March 22, 2007 04:00 PM

I have some of the new lights in the house and
all 7 in the garage they work ok.But I tried 3
in the light over the kitchen table and because it had a dimmer all they did was flicker even
with the dimmer on full.Its been said that buying
Carbon foot prints is like the Mafia donating to
the Catholic church....Green on the outside red
on the inside...

Posted by: Tincan Sailor at March 22, 2007 05:20 PM

I use CFL's too Bob, you've hit on the essence of the problem, it's choice. Not to have some hairbrained asshole legislate a one size fits all law that takes away the incandescent lamp. Hey CFL's and Fluorescents work great in warm climates like Thailand. But the Dudley Do-right's like Rep. Jane Harman (D-Calif.)have never used them below 40ºF, even in a warm 70ºF to 80ºF enclosure they take several minutes to come to full brilliance. I use one on the front porch, it never gets to full brilliance below 30ºF. I've installed over 30 of them in the past year, with 15 of them in my daughters unheated double garage, so I do use them. You're looking at 15 minutes minimum for them to get up to brilliance, instant on!!! Forget it. Mercury Vapor and Sodium Vapor lamps, I've installed and replaced hundreds of them, they are the only dependable cost effective alternative in subzero climates. I'd like to see Jane Harman take a crack at replacing them at -45ºF in a 60 MPH snowstorm before making any law. Just don't Californicate the rest of the nation!!!

Posted by: Jack at March 22, 2007 05:23 PM

I live on a VERY remote abandoned limestone quarry. At the entrance, 2/10 of a mile from my home, I have this halogen light that is incredible -- I think jets navigate by it from 35,000 feet. The bulb has lasted for a couple of years.

I'm not wild about the bill, but the thing does announce that "you ain't sneakin' onto MY property".

I have motion detector lights around my home.

The final line of defense is a Marine armed with a .38 pistol and a 12 gauge shotgun.

Posted by: OINK at March 22, 2007 05:34 PM

PG&E Converted their st.lights from Mecury vapor
to Sodium vapor some 40 years ago. The only problem was with the starter board (made in Mexico)would cause the light to flash off and on.
By the way on a good day I could change out lamp
photo-cell and starter board on a hundred lights a day...

Posted by: Tincan Sailor at March 22, 2007 09:56 PM

Lynn, exactly, it is one thing to suggest something and another to force something on people.
There are bigger and more important things our country needs to take care of then the kind of lighting a person uses.

Posted by: Wild Thing at March 22, 2007 11:21 PM

Tom, yes, that's the thing. They want us to do things they do not do themselves. Like Gore's bill of $30,000 to light his house. yikes how about Gore showing the world he is doing what he preaches.

Posted by: Wild Thing at March 22, 2007 11:22 PM

Bob oh yes you right, the mandated unleaded gasoline, I actually had forgotten about that.

Posted by: Wild Thing at March 22, 2007 11:24 PM

Mark, great comment, thank you.

Love this...hahahahaha

"What is the big thing with 'global warming' is ... WE ALL GONNA DIE...And Algore is the only one who can save us."

Posted by: Wild Thing at March 22, 2007 11:27 PM

Oink, hahaha

nothing can go wrong (click) go wrong (click)go wrong (click)

We would be using them if we liked the light they have, but we tried one long ago and the room was so dark and it was a closet and we needed light in their badly. So we just got rid of it and still buy the kind we have always had.

Posted by: Wild Thing at March 22, 2007 11:29 PM

Jack, omg that is it isn't it. The dems want us living like Osama in a cave. hahahaaahaha Good one.

Your right about not being enough light, at least we sure didn't like it the time we bought just one bulb last year and gave it a try. I couldn't get rid of it fast enough.

Posted by: Wild Thing at March 22, 2007 11:31 PM

Yankeemom, I think you hit the nail on the head. Gore has got to be up to something, some way to be making tons of money on this stuff his movie was about. I don't trust him one little bit.

Posted by: Wild Thing at March 22, 2007 11:32 PM

Bob, exactly! It is your choice to use the lighting you want not the governments and it should always be that way.

Posted by: Wild Thing at March 22, 2007 11:34 PM

Darth, hahahahahahaha

Gore does remind me of that since you mentioned it. heh heh

Mel Brook's classic Young Frankenstein

Posted by: Wild Thing at March 22, 2007 11:35 PM

Tincan Sailor, we tried one only and in the closet and it was too dark for my eyes.

I just don't want our government to demand this of us and start ruling our lives and our we live. Choice that is and has been the American way and it should stay like that.

Posted by: Wild Thing at March 22, 2007 11:37 PM

OINK said:

That pisses me off -- I've already started using the new bulbs ... the local WalMart is pushing them.

Me too. I started using them because the electricity in my house is screwy; regular light bulbs burn out way too fast and replacing them constantly drives me nuts. I LIKE the idea of long-lasting light bulbs, but I don't want them in every light fixture. And now that I know about the disposal issue, I don't want them AT ALL. Especially with a child in the house, because she could drop one and break it!

There's no f'n way I'm going to knock myself out looking for a way to dispose of them, and anyway, had I not found this out, I'd have just tossed them like regular bulbs like everyone else probably does. And you KNOW they do.

I can't believe the environmentalists are talking about making hazardous waste mandatory! It completely defies logic!

Wild Thing: You KNOW this is all about money--not just for Manbearpigore, but for the whole environmentalism industry. Like they say, follow the money.
(You saw The Great Global Warming Swindle, right?)

Posted by: Beth at March 23, 2007 02:50 AM

Light bulb disposal? In the trash can and out to the problem here.

Posted by: BobF at March 23, 2007 09:50 AM