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New lightbulb regulations raise concerns

January 6, 2014

BY MARY GARRISON
editor@dailytimesleader.com

It's a new year, and U.S. residents could be looking at the world in a whole new light. … At least, they will in their homes.
The U.S. Department of Energy launched the second phase of new energy efficiency regulations where household lightbulbs are concerned Wednesday, which prohibited the manufacturing of traditional 40- and 60-watt incandescent bulbs in favor of compact fluorescent lightbulbs (CFL) and light-emitting diode (LED) bulbs. The bill, known as the Energy Independence and Security Act and signed into law by former President George W. Bush in 2007, aims to replace the standard with more energy efficient lighting for homes.
According to information provided by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, "There are 4 billion light bulb sockets in the U.S. and more than 3 billion of them still use the standard incandescent technology that hasn’t changed much in 125 years. A standard incandescent is only 10 percent efficient — the other 90 percent of the electricity it uses is lost as heat.
"Another benefit of using more efficient light bulbs includes reductions of harmful emissions from coal-fired power plants (mercury, arsenic, chromium, nickel, acid gases and greenhouse gases)," the EPA added. "This helps to protect the health of our citizens, wildlife and environment, and it’s an easy, achievable step toward reducing our carbon footprint."

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