Thursday, December 06, 2007

Time to stock pile light bulbs?

The Minister for the Environment announced that he plans to ban incandescent light bulbs starting January 1, 2009. First of all, this is what we get with our Green Party Minister. He even went beyond what Greenpeace wanted. They were looking for a ban starting in 2010, but Minister Gormley decided that the Irish people want to be 40 shades of green greener than Greenpeace.

If you come here often enough you know I hate this. My initial reaction was, "Will it be illegal to sell such bulbs or to use them"? In other words, can I bring back incandescent bulbs by the trunk-load every time I head north or even fly to America? Also, Minister, don't try and tell me how much money I'm going to save on my electric bill when we all KNOW that the low energy bulbs cost a fortune.

And, beyond the price issue, my impression of the light they produce is not good. Maybe the technology has improved, but if we're basically going to be stuck with fluorescent lighting then I'm definitely going to look for a way around this ban. Also, aren't there a lot of light fixtures for which there are no low energy alternatives?

What I don't understand is why the Minister is banning incandescent bulbs because they use too much energy, but not other energy hogs. Why not ban hair dryers or clothes dryers or irons or dishwashers (could at least ban dishwashers' dryer cycles). Each of those appliances has a low energy replacement (basically they are air, air, wrinkles and elbow grease).

I hate this because it stinks of old style, Stalinist, command-economy government. I'd prefer to wear wrinkled shirts than read in poor light. I want to choose, but the Minister has decided that the people are the enemy and they must be brought to heel.