Monday, June 13, 2011


An email that I recently received informed me of the following :

Pretty soon the Renewable Fuels, Consumer Protection and Energy Efficient Act of 2007 will take effect, removing SAFE incandescent light bulbs from supermarket shelves, and replacing them with expensive light-emitting diodes (LEDs), toxic compact fluorescent (CFLs), and dangerous halogen bulbs.

However, Sen. Mike Enzi (R-Wyo.), has introduced the Better Use of Light Bulbs (BULB) Act (S. 395) that would REPEAL the law that phases out 100 watt and 75 watt incandescent light bulbs and ends production of traditional incandescent light bulbs in the United States by 2015.

Michele Bachmann is sponsoring a similar bill in the House (HR. 849) and there is another (HR.91)

Several countries have laws that phase out manufacturing of traditional incandescent lights from 2012 through 2014, with most prompting their replacement with toxic CFLs, or halogen bulbs that are a fire hazard!

LED's :

The Wall Street Journal reports that: LEDs remain the priciest option, with 9-watt and 13-watt bulbs that replace 40-watt and 60-watt incandescent models costing from $20 to $55 each. ... San Jose, Calif.-based Switch Bulb Co., says this fall it will offer an LED substitute for the 100-watter with suggested retail price of about $30.

A much cheaper alternative is halogen bulbs, but they come with safety risks because they are a FIRE HAZARD! According to The New York Times, a 300-watt halogen bulb can reach 970 degrees Fahrenheit, and 500-watt bulbs can reach 1,200 degrees.

Halogen lights:

According to Lance Turner of Renew Magazine, during an interview with THE AGE, less than 10 percent of the power of a halogen bulb is converted into light. The rest is turned into heat. That excess heat poses a significant fire risk when debris or insulation strays too close.

According to Pacific Gas and Electric, a halogen light bulb can heat up to 700 to 1,100 degrees Fahrenheit. And any flammable material coming into contact with such heat can burst into flames in a matter of seconds. In research done by New York State Consumer Protection Board, it took 24 seconds for a T-shirt to ignite after coming into contact with a halogen light bulb. When you consider that paper ignites at 451 degrees and cloth at 640 degrees, it is easy to see why the halogen lamps pose a hazard (the best alternative to both halogen and CFL light is Tom Edison's 146-year old incandescent light bulb).

In 2008, The Age also reported that Melbourne had 57 halogen-related fires causing $17 million in damage in just 18 months. Those fires resulted in 10 deaths.

and Compact Flourescent Bulbs (CFB's - the curly bulbs):

Britain's Health Protection Agency was the first to confirm consumers' claims that exposure to CFLs was making them sick.

Consumers in the United States, Canada, England and Europe have been complaining about headaches, skin burns, rashes, and neurological problems caused by CFLs because they emit ultraviolet radiation and electrical and magnetic field emissions, or DIRTY ENERGY.

Health Canada tested the UV levels in CFLs and released a report stating that it was found that some people are extremely sensitive to UV and may be affected by the amount of UV produced. This includes people with autoimmune diseases, like Lupus, and those with sensitive skin.

British and Canadian health warnings also state that adults should never be closer than1 foot to a CFL-and that exposure should be limited to one hour.

CFLs contain carcinogenic toxins, including phenol, naphthalene and styrene.
Researcher Peter Braun, who carried out tests on CFLs at the independent Berlin Alab Laboratory, said: For such carcinogenic substances it is important they are kept as far away as possible from the human environment, the UK Express reports. Braun added that the bulbs are especially harmful if they are left on near a child's head, or if they are used in close proximity to adults who use the light for reading.

While it was known that harmful amounts of mercury are released if one of the new 'green' bulbs breaks, experts discovered they also emit several carcinogenic chemicals. The EPA itself has issued new warnings about mercury, yet is mute on the use of toxic mercury in CFLs.

The carcinogenic toxin phenol is a poison that was used by the Nazis to kill concentration camp victims-and naphthalene and styrene are released as a form of steam when the CFL is switched on.

Last year, the Canadian Broadcasting Network reported that a Trent University study revealed that DIRTY ELECTRICITY produced by CFLs can cause diabetics' blood sugar levels to increase, heighten neurological symptoms for people who have Multiple Sclerosis (MS), and cause breathing problems for asthmatics.

CFLs, a fluorescent light bulb invention that was once believed to be an energy and environmental solution to America's problems, is quickly becoming a more expensive and dangerous alternative. CFLs produce high levels of electromagnetic pollution, producing electromagnetic frequencies between 400 and 800, whereas safe incandescent bulbs emit EMF levels of less than 50. CFLs can cause headaches and eye strain, and can hinder productivity for those who are dyslexic or suffer from attention deficit disorders (ADD/ADHD).

According to The Mercury News, "CFLs account for a quarter of new bulb sales and each contains up-to five milligrams of mercury, a potent neurotoxin that's on the worst-offending list of environmental contaminants."

The Association of Lighting and Mercury Recyclers reports that: "Demand for the bulbs is growing as federal and state mandates for energy-efficient lighting takes effect, yet only about two percent of residential consumers and one-third of businesses recycle them. If the recycling rate remains as abysmally low as it is, then there will certainly be more mercury released into the environment," said Paul Abernathy, executive director of the Napa-based recycling association.

Consumers should have the right to purchase any light bulb they want, be it traditional incandescent, CFLs, LEDs or halogen bulbs.

Americans cannot afford any other alternative, especially since scientific research is revealing that CFLs are toxic and harmful and easy to break; halogen bulbs that can cause fires! and LED's are way too expensive.

We are being asked to contact our legislators in Congress and ask that they support Sen. Enzi's BULB Act (S. 395) and its companion bill in the House, H.R. 91.



Libertarian Advocate said...

Great Post Judy.

I know I shouldn't be, but I am often still am amazed by the full on denial capacity of enviro-dupes, even in the face of overwhelming evidence that CFLs are far and away worse than incandescent bulbs.

Climate Majority said...

Hi everyone,

The lighting efficiency standards are actually a good thing. I'd like to point out a few things you missed in this post.

1) incandescent bulbs will NOT be banned. Just the old-style lamps that waste 90% of energy in the form of heat.

THESE are the bulbs that are dangerous, short-lived, and wasteful.

2) Halogen lamps ARE incandescents. Advanced halogen lamps (philips halogena) waste less energy in the form of heat, reducing your electricity bills. AND they last 2+ years.

3) CFLs do suck. You are right. But they are a good transitional technology.

4) LEDS last forever and use less energy. And they are not as expensive as they were before. You can get them for less than $10 each.

5) The BULB act is bad for the economy. The BULB act will cost american consumers $12 billion EVERY SINGLE YEAR in energy costs.

The unnecessary power usage is equivalent to the output of 30 large power plants, increasing our addiction to foreign oil.