Banning the Incandescent Bulb

In an effort to "Go Green," the Tories have announced a potential ban on the incandescent light bulb by 2012 as a part of their new plan for the environment. The ban will save Canadians money, save on electricity and help reduce greenhouse emissions.
To be frank, I am not sure how I feel about this. To be sure, fluorescent bulbs do cut energy use. They also last longer than incandescents. Our house has a little more than 50% fluorescent lights, and I did notice that our electricity bill went down. But really, is banning incandescent bulbs the most important thing a government can do? It ranks nowhere at all on my personal list of priorities a government should have. There are so many significant social ills that the Conservatives could be working on. Banning a certain type of light bulb seems somehow puerile, stupid, a waste of my time and valuable tax dollars.
I did not vote Conservative so I could watch them diddle away at peanut issues. There are bigger problems in this country than incandescent light bulbs.


Anonymous said...

Will the Film industry in Toronto be banned from using these bulbs during "Period" movies when the CFL bulb never existed or was used for Lamps and porch lights , this leaves the Studios with the option to film outside in Natural light or in-Studio modern Movies based on 2004 and up when CFL lights were not uncommon.

But here's a new problem, I'm starting to leave the Kitchen CFL light On because it's cheaper and last longer , so the massive savings over it's life may be based on the exact usage for the old one that made you turn it off just from the costs and short life.

Nancy said...

I wonder if anyone has considered how much additional electricity/oil/natural gas we will need to burn during our Canadian winters to make up for the "wasted" heat energy given off by all those inefficient incandescant light bulbs?

Mark, Ottawa said...

The government has no place in the light bulbs of the nation.


Steve said...

I've installed several CFL bulbs in my apartment (despite the fact I am not a football fan), and I find I use them as little as possible. I hate the colour of the light, and they take several seconds to light up. Moreover, one of them hums like crazy.

Nancy is right. Such a measure is false economy. Without the ambient heat from incandescents, we will all be turning on the heat earlier in the fall and turning it off later in the spring. The heating system (sometimes electric, more often fossil fuel-based) will be picking up the slack all winter long. With the long days in the summer, we all generally use the lights less anyway.

The sad thing is that the Tories must be seen to be doing something on climate change. As stupid as this idea is, it provides the appearance they are doing something at relatively low cost. I do hope they have some better ideas up their sleeves.

Joanne (True Blue) said...

Gary Lunn was on Mike Duffy tonight saying that they're not going to ban incandescent bulbs necessarily - It will depend on their efficiency. If the technology can be improved, then those that have met the standards will not be banned.

Having said that, I am getting sick and tired of things being banned. Why not ban food? Some people overeat you know. Then they get heart problems and tax the health care system.

Mark said...

In line with Mark from Ottawa, I would just add that anyone with a desire for small government will be disappointed by this plan. It reeks to the high heavens of State micromanagement.

Mark said...

Oh, if I might add one more comment: the CPC is eroding its base. I've said it time and time again: you can't act liberal and call yourself conservative.

Hannah said...

I have only this to say on the subject:
This is going to cause massive issues for people with certain neurological issues.

Herman and I have an 'energy efficient' lightbulb in our living room light. I cannot keep it on for long periods of time because it hurts my eyes.

Fluorescent light flickers at a different rate than incandescent lights do. It has long been known to cause problems for people who suffer from migraines and seizure disorders.

The bugs aren't worked out of the newer more 'efficient' light bulbs, and unless the bugs get worked out in the next five years we are going to have major issues.

Oh yeah, and in addition to Mark's comment, the corrosion caused by the new light bulbs at the end of their life has been linked to several house fires in the last two years.

Jamie Arpin-Ricci said...

I think you ask a valid question, especially since light bulbs account for around 1% of the energy issues overall. That being said, as it isn't this issue INSTEAD of other issues, but rather this among many, I am not keen to be too critical of this move. I think it is a small step in the right direction. Should the public support it, perhaps it will convince them to take those others steps as well.

On a side note, regarding buzzing, poor light quality and loss of heat emission, these are actually not a big issue in the long run. Buzzing and poor light quality usually happen when the cheaper brand of this kind of bulb is used. Pay the extra few bucks for the better bulb- it will last longer, give off better light and are not likely to buzz. As for heat loss, the loss of bulb heat compared to energy savings is infinitesimal, so not really an issue.

But then, I didn't vote Conservative at all (can I still comment here? wink)


Ruth said...

I think the point about neurological issues is a good one, and one that was probably not considered. As for turning up the heat, I don't see that as being very likely. Incandescents do not give off enough heat to make a significant difference in your home.

As far as I am concerned, there isn't enough evidence to link so-called global warming with human activity. There isn't even enough evidence showing that global warming is going to cause the major catastrophes that some people predict. This is an issue the government should not be involved in. They can educate people, offer tax rebates and the like, but in the end the market should sort itself out. A ban is not the answer.

Anonymous said...

if i have a good idea will a candle pop up over my head instead of a lightbulb?

better not use any hairspray.


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