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Monday, December 12, 2011

On 'Energy Efficient' Light-Bulbs

Or ... About those "Mercury Vapor Bombs"

Michael A. Walsh in the New York Post: Gray Dawn: Green Bulbs, Black Hole --
On New Year’s Day, in addition to a hangover, America will wake up in the pale winter light to one grim consequence of the Bush administration’s never-requited desire to be loved by the left: the traditional 100-watt light bulb will be banned for sale in the United States.

At the height of the panic over “man-caused global warming” (one of history’s greatest frauds), lawmakers felt compelled to be seen to do something, and Edison’s bright bulb made a handy fall guy.


Even with all the evidence to prove that the 2007 stampede was a mistake, those “radical” House Republicans couldn’t muster a majority for their July attempt to reverse the ban. So the standard incandescent 100-watt bulb - like booze during Prohibition - will disappear from store shelves come the first of the year, to be followed in turn by lower wattages until the lowly 40-watt bulb goes the way of the dodo in 2014.

The mercury-filled CFL bulbs will still be available, and advanced halogen-incandescent bulbs that meet the new standards are already available. An executive at Philips, which is making the new bulbs, claims that the ban has “created more choice for consumers.”

More revenue for the manufacturers is more like it - the new incandescent bulbs will cost about a buck apiece more than the old ones.

As far as “choice” goes, Energy Secretary Steven Chu was more frank: “We are taking away a choice that continues to let people waste their own money.” This, from the guy who green-lighted the $535 million taxpayer loan guarantee to Solyndra, the now-bankrupt solar-panel manufacturer, among other “green jobs” black holes.

For these luminaries, the only good choice is one that wastes other people’s money.
Beware when government officials are keen to be seen to do something -- the result will all but inevitably make things worse for Everyman ... while funneling funds from his pocket into the pockets of select constituents of those government officials. -- "For these luminaries, the only good choice is one that wastes other people’s money."

Also, isn't it odd -- we're supposed to freak out about *any* mercury used in industrial processes, which can be monitored and potentially improved, lest even a smidgen of mercury "escape" into "the environment"; yet the mercury-based CFL bulbs are to be used by the billions, in conditions in which their "safe" disposal cannot be ensured, nor even monitored. I wonder, is the next step a monthly "inspection" of all homes, so as to ensure compliance with "proper" (i.e. expensive, both in terms of money and of time-and-effort) disposal of CFL bulbs?

House votes to block enforcement of light bulb rules -- but, until Congress overturns the particular law, that 'ban' hasn't gone actually away.


Drew said...

I can't understand why the Republicans don't take a stand and fix this issue. This, and the TSA naked scanners. Two easy issues to take on, and not only stand for liberty but also increase their own popularity. But it's like they're just too dumb to know what's good for them or for the country.

Ilíon said...

The article says that they tried back in July, but hadn't the votes to get a repeal passed.

And, yes, Republican politicians have been known to be extremely stupid. Just look at how they constantly fall for the Dems' calls for "bipartisanship".

Nick said...

A Republican president gave us this idiocy and tyranny, and I guarantee a repeal of the "bulb ban" will not pass the current GOP controlled House.

Republicans, unfortunately, only talk about being for smaller government at election time, but, once in office, the state always seems to grow under their "leadership".

Buy your incandescent bulbs now, before the phase out is complete in a few years (many are stocking up while they're still legal to purchase, and I urge you guys to so as well.

Also, see the following link for some myth shattering of the lies from pro-ban crowd: Five Myths About the Federal Incandescent Light Bulb Ban

Unknown said...

I've been reading a lot of issues about CFLs and the danger it may bring. I don't know if I already need to change my bulbs at home. All of my bulbs are CFLs. My contractor who took his Electrician Online Course said that LED is much better to use.

Ilíon said...

What a wonderful name! (even if it is missing the 'i' ;) )

Yet, based on the content of your post, and the list of "your" blogs in your profile, I have to strongly suspect that you're spamming me.

Wakefield Tolbert said...

Ah yes, the Mercury Vapor Bombs.

The EPA establishes that parts per trillion mercury in the air is a danger to the commonweal, and so coal plants are monitored right down to every oriface and output to scan for any Mercurial offense, among other dangers from energy production, and YET now Congress--including the "free market" and "public choice" advocates of the GOP are part of the CFL craze on behalf of Mother Gaia, and so we get to call a virtual HAZMAT team when one of these neurotoxin-laden things pops on the floor before little Junior inhales the vapor and turns into a neocortex zombie.

ON the lighter side (pun intended) I wonder--has anyone reminded our betters and highbrow intellectuals in Congress that the SUN is an incandescent light source, just like the soon-to-be banned lightbulbs of the olden days?

Just curious.

Merry Christmas!

Wakefield Tolbert said...

PS--I meant to add that, yes, there is some mercury in the air due to coal "emissions" and processing, etc. Just to be clear.

Ilíon said...

WT: "... and so we get to call a virtual HAZMAT team when one of these neurotoxin-laden things pops on the floor before little Junior inhales the vapor and turns into a neocortex zombie."

There is nothing 'virtual' about it. This is what "the law" (i.e. regulatory body rulings) call for; this is what has happened when hapless homeowners have foolishly contacted officials with "what do I do, now?" questions.

BTW, long time, no see!

Ilíon said...

"Ah yes, the Mercury Vapor Bombs."

I like that!