Forget Healthcare...Watch those town halls when the light bulb ban takes effect...

We have until 2012 until we follow where the European Union is leading.  Our fearless leaders, in order to make themselves feel better about themselves passed a bill that banned incandescent light bulbs from American shores.  The federal government believes that they have the right to interfere in our lives to that extent….

Well, here’s what’s happening in Europe:

On September 1, the European Union began to enforce a ban on incandescent light bulbs. The response was immediate outcry from thousands of EU citizens who felt the blanket ban was overdone and failed to take into account hazards from compact fluorescent bulbs containing the toxic heavy metal mercury, according to the New York Times.

Nine days later, the furor has failed to subside. Europeans are hoarding still available supplies of incandescent bulbs and the airwaves are lit up with complaints about the Draconian energy saving enforcement measure.

If this is what’s happening in Europe under socialism lite, just think what’s going to happen when this impinges on the American consciousness…..

Pssst. Hey. Want what I got? Need a bulb?

Get ’em now and stock up. What happens in England happens here when progressives are in power. And yes, I include President Bush in that description. He signed the bill.

Millions of Britons are finally waking up to the fact that their beloved light bulb will disappear for good after 120 years.

Traditional 100-watt bulbs are vanishing from the High Street because of a controversial European Union decision.

Yesterday panic buyers were snapping up the remaining bulbs in a last-ditch attempt to stockpile the final supplies. Hundreds of leading supermarkets and DIY chains – including Sainsbury’s, Asda and Homebase – have already sold their last remaining bulbs after a surge in panic buying.

All in the name of lowering CO2 in the atmosphere. Global warming, don’cha know?

A little over a year ago, Congress decided that they knew what was best for you. (What else is new?) They banned the incandescent light bulb because Congress felt that those bulbs were destroying the planet.

The phase-out of incandescent light is to begin with the 100-watt bulb in 2012 and end in 2014 with the 40-watt.

( I think my attic could hold quite a bit of these bulbs. I see businesses forming…..)

All light bulbs must use 25 percent to 30 percent less 2014. By 2020, bulbs must be 70 percent more efficient than they are today.

My experience with the new CFL bulb is that they DO NOT last any longer than regular bulbs, put out horribly inferior light, and contain enough mercury that their manufacture is not allowed in the USA. ( See # 6 (bolded) below) Fluorescent lights cause me and many others to experience headaches, migraines, and eye strain.

(Hmmmm, I see a class action law suit……since CFL use will be mandatory. )

While they use less energy, they costs many times a regular bulb. If they don’t last the reported lifetime, all you are doing is spending more money. No savings. I wonder how much the power/electric companies like GE lobbied the government to “save the world” so that the consumer would be forced to pay them more money.

Here’s a quick list of the problems. From a commenter at Treehugger.com

Here’s a short critique of the bogus argument that there will be a reduction in toxic mercury into the environment with CFL’s due to the energy reduction from coal plants:
(1) The EPA figures are incorrect for several reasons. The basic one is that they assume 100% of electricity in the US is from coal plants. Not true. 50% of electricity does not come from coal plants in the US and coal plants are now mandated to reduce their mercury emissions by between 70% and 90% in the next several years.
(2) Places like California produce little energy from coal plants, so CFL energy reductions will not cut much mercury there.
(3) The 5mg of mercury generally claimed for CFL’s is largely a goal and not the current reality which can be 300% to 600% higher, depending on the manufacturer. The EPA assumes just 4mg.
(4) CFL’s are made in China with energy from mostly very dirty coal plants that emit much more mercury than US coal plants.
(5) CFL’s made in China spill as much mercury into the environment as goes into the CFL’s.
(6) CFL’s are delivered here on ships using bunker oil, the worst mercury producer of the fuel oils. Incandescent bulbs are still almost all made in the US.
(7) There is no recycling program in place or planned that could handle the number of CFL’s proposed. And after many years, even the industrial recycling programs only handle 25% of the mercury from fluorescent lights.
(8) It is likely that if any major recycling program is set up, the CFL’s will be shipped back to China for reprocessing.
Thus, a massive CFL program will put a massive amount of toxic mercury into the environment and very likely into our kid’s bodies. And the EPA says that a sixth of them already have too much mercury in them. Given the danger, it might be wise to believe the EPA in this case.

(Besides, Obama has said the he is going to END the coal powered plants. Alternative energy! Heck, how about nuclear power, then? No mercury then. CFLs are then a pollutant, not a “solution”.)

While I believe that the danger of the amount of mercury in these bulbs might be overblown, see below:

“And although one dot of mercury might not seem so bad, almost 300 million compact fluorescents were sold in the United States last year.” (NY Times Feb. 17, 2008)

5mg x 300,000,000 = 1500kg = 3306lbs (Dominion Virginia Power has partnered with the Home Depot and Honeywell since October 2007 to offer energy-efficient compact fluorescent lamps (CFLs) at discounted rates, and the program passed two million sales this week.) 10,000,000 mg of mercury. Is that all being recycled or is it going into Virginia landfills?)

How many of you are going to recycle their light bulbs in special bulb recycling centers? Oh, wait, where are the centers? What happens when EVERY light bulb is a CFL? And how about the additional mercury that is in the normal fluorescent tube lights? Why don’t those get recycled?

From Quest, which actually promotes CFL’s

Of course, recycling is best, and that is still a problem. Alan Meier, Home Energy’s senior executive editor, admits to turning part of his garage into a “temporary hazardous waste holding facility” to hold his family’s used CFLs, since the nearest CFL recycling center is 13 miles away from his home in Berkeley, through “one of the worst traffic jams in the United States.”

“temporary hazardous waste holding facility”? That assumes that you HAVE a place to store the bulbs. I don’t have a garage. What about you? What about broken bulbs? Where do you store them?

Recycling center is 13 miles away? That’s 26 miles round trip. In traffic, with the stop at the center, that’s about an hour.That’s over a gallon of fuel in most vehicles. Hmmm, more pollution. And that gas cost just added to the increased cost and inconvenience of the CFL’s.

(Is there one in Richmond? ) Aha! Here’s some:

Home Depot
1.3 mi Commercial Drop-Off
1400 County Road SOUTH HILL, VA 23970

(434) 955-2477 Web Site


Please call for hours.



Compact Fluorescent Lightbulbs.

Atlantic Electrical Supply Corp
3.4 mi Commercial Drop-Off
2117 Westwood Avenue RICHMOND, VA 23230

(804) 358-6737 Web Site


Monday to Friday 8am to 5pm and Saturday 8am to noon



Compact Fluorescent Lightbulbs, Fluorescent Bulbs.

Advanced Technologies, Inc.
4.5 mi Commercial Drop-Off
4300 Eubank Road RICHMOND, VA 23231

(804) 222-6076 Web Site


Monday to Friday 8am to 4pm


This site is located near Richmond Airport. Please contact in advance to schedule a drop-off time and date.


Cell Phones, Compact Fluorescent Lightbulbs, Computer Monitors, Computer Recycling, Electronics, Office Machines, Telephones, Televisions.

Home Depot
5.9 mi Commercial Drop-Off
6501 West Broad Street RICHMOND, VA 23230

(804) 289-6020 Web Site


Please call for hours.



Compact Fluorescent Lightbulbs.

Home Depot

6.1 mi Commercial Drop-Off
7251 Bell Creek Road MECHANICSVILLE, VA 23111

(804) 559-7333 Web Site

At least Richmond, Virginia has more recycling than Berkeley, CA. Oh, the irony….

So, make sure you hit Wal-Mart today. Buy some incandescent light bulbs. Stock up. The environmentalists have gotten them banned by 2012.

The phase-out of incandescent light is to begin with the 100-watt bulb in 2012 and end in 2014 with the 40-watt.

So now we get to import mercury filled Chinese light bulbs, built in EPA exempt, slave labor factories, powered by dirty coal, in the the great environmental paradise of Communist China and transported to the USA in  huge ships, built in non-American shipyards, powered by OPEC oil. So, we have that going for us……