Compact Fluorescents and a Selfish Public

I just sat, horrified watching the news about the forthcoming ban on the sale of incandescent light bulbs on Sky News – but not because they are being banned.

Standard light bulbs use horrendous amounts of electricity and throw most of it away as heat. Compact fluorescent lamps on the other hand are much more efficient, giving out very little heat and mostly producing light. They cost less to run and last many times as long. I’ve been using these at home since they first came out and very rarely do I see a broken lamp, something that used to be common-place. I’ve been amazed from time to time watching people go past the lighting section in supermarkets and turning their noses up at the “new” lights – but I’ve never quite seen anything like the acts of selfishness and ignorance on the news today.

In the interview, dealers were giving out plain wrong information, people were talking absolute gibberish about “being controlled by the government and were openely stockpiling the old lights being just the beginning. Part of the problem is that the early compacts were large and gave off a rather cold light – not to mention being expensive. Indeed, inexplicably, a certain DIY store still charges over the odds for these lamps but thankfully the supermarkets are now in on the act even though few staff have any training whatsoever to help customers decide. The newer lamps are the same colour as the old, extremely cheap and in some cases the same size as the lamps they replace. The better ones actually say “warm” colour.

Older filament lamps are COMPLETELY un-necessarily wasting electricity and anyone who cares about the environment can make a quick contribution by getting rid of them. The sooner they are gone the better. For those using halogen lights there are now LED equivalents (sadly still a little expensive) which are almost as bright – and it’s only a matter of time before they are brighter).

As for the brightness of compact fluorescents, I’m currently in Spain and the DIY stores here sell a 50w compact fluorescent that is so bright it almost hurts to look at it.

To those who are stockpiling 100w bulbs to beat the ban – all I can say is this – you are SELFISH!

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