Saturday, September 5, 2009

Light Bulbs

This week Britain began its ban on incandescent light bulbs, gradually banning the sale of all of them by 2011.  People are being required to use the new fluorescent bulbs even though most people don't like them.  The government has decided (isn't it nice when the government decides things for us) that they save so much energy that it doesn't matter that people aren't happy with the quality of light, the fact they won't fit in many sockets, take a while to come on (always nice in a dark room) can't be used with a dimmer switch, cause migraines, don't provide enough light for people with low vision  or the fact that they contain mercury and must be recycled not thrown in the trash (and I live in an area that doesn't have recycling, they're going to have to use them anyway.
This is happening in Britain and you say why do I care, outside of the fact that I travel frequently to England?  Well I'll tell you.  Under the Clean Energy Act of 2007 our Congress, who work so hard to take care of us and protect us from ourselves, has mandated the phasing out of incandescent bulbs  in the US too.  Beginning in 2012 the sale of 100 watt incandescent bulbs is banned, in 2013 the 60 watt is banned and in 2014 the sale of the 40 watt is banned.
Isn't that great, just as I get older and need more light what I'm going to get is less light.
We've bought a few of the energy effiecient fluorescent bulbs and we are not impressed.  There's one in Mac's closet and after you turn it on you have to stand there and wait for it to come on, and Lord knows I'm not the patient kind, when I want light I want it instantly.
And the issue of mercury concerns me too.   Experts say there is less mercury in one of these bulbs  than in a thermometer, but I don't turn my thermometer on a dozen times a day, my thermometer probably won't "burn" out and I've never broken a thermometer, while on the other hand I've broken loads of light bulbs.  It is recommended that if you break one of these light bulbs you put on rubber gloves, sweep up the debris and put it in a sealed bag and sent to be recycled, not put in the regular trash, and as I mentioned I'm in a no recycle area.  You're supposed to recycle them when they burn out too.  So I guess I'll just keep my burned out bulbs and decorate with them.
What we're probably going to do, h**l, what we're already doing is hoarding incandescent bulbs.  We paid, what amounts to, 60 cents a bulb for 100 watt bulbs.  The fluorescent ones cost 10 times that much, yes $6.00 a bulb.  Yes you can find them cheaper but consumers have discovered that the cheaper ones don't last as long and break easier.  So Mac has started a "bulb" closet.  
Wonder how our government will "take care" of us next?

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