Thursday, February 01, 2007

Bright Idea

Well here goes the nanny state again.

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - A California lawmaker wants to make his state the first to ban incandescent lightbulbs as part of California's groundbreaking initiatives to reduce energy use and greenhouse gases blamed for global warming.

The "How Many Legislators Does it Take to Change a Lightbulb Act" would ban incandescent lightbulbs by 2012 in favor of energy-saving compact fluorescent lightbulbs.

Now before anyone goes nuts here let me explain. In my head I count about 25 CFLs around my own house with about another dozen standard fluorescent tubes in places like under kitchen cabinets and in the garage. There are probably as many incandescent bulbs. Why? Well I like to save money (man you should see my PG&E bill) but CFLs are not well suited for many uses. You can't use them in dimmer curcuits and I have several of those. I've had really bad luck with CFL flood lights. They die way too soon. I'm guessing the heat buildup is too much in many fixtures designed for standard flood lights. When you consider the cost they are nowhere near worth it.

Now regular spiral CFLs that are about shaped like A bulbs are great. The cost is way down too. I often buy packs of 4-6 for about $1.50 a bulb. Good price and they work well. And I see lots of other people using them too. But they often produce ugly light. When I'm in my den watching TV I often turn the dimmers down to produce a darker warmer light with less glare.

There are much bigger wasters of electricity. Stores that are closed all night with 100% of their parking lot lights on, all night. Office buildings with A/C units running all year.

This guy has no clue however. I have no clue where he is coming from either (well maybe I do). I saw this clown interviewed last night and he basically said because consumers are too stupid to change over we now need a law. Estimates are that light consumes about 20% of the average electric bill. So look at my case. How much of that is already energy efficient. Probably more than half because the CFL represent the heavy use lights as well. Places like the kitchen. the bath, the hallway and outdoor security lights on photocells that run all night. The dimmer circuits are often at reduced levels so they are saving power too.

So let me ask who is stupid. Taking away peoples' choices and imposing the view of arrogant politicians and bureaucrats is stupid. There are better ways to encourage change.

Voting this guy out of office might be a start.



Blogger Bake Town said...

I dunno. Couldn't they just insist bulb makers cease and desist making the energy wasting bulbs? I mean, I believe in giving people a choice, but really, there are just some people that this kind of thinking never gets through to. They’re the same people who leave lights on all over the house and refuse to recycle. I could see how it would help everyone with their energy bills if we’re not being drug down by the people who just don’t give a damn.

I realize there are problems my argument as well. I'm just saying.... :-)

10:37 AM, February 06, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Banning incandescent Light Bulbs? I'll bet you that all of us who own LAVA LAMPS are crying fowl!

7:35 PM, January 01, 2008  

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