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Light bulb maker flips the switch

Hillary Wicai Mar 14, 2007


SCOTT JAGOW: There’s been a lot of talk about getting rid of regular old light bulbs ’cause they waste energy. Today a pretty surprising development on this: The world’s biggest light bulb maker is going along with the idea. Hillary Wicai reports.

HILLARY WICAI: In an agreement just announced in Washington this morning, Philips Lighting is pledging to work with energy and environmental advocates to push for government and utility incentives.

The new coalition’s 10-year goal: to phase out the old-fashioned incandescent light bulb and encourage all of us to use energy-efficient alternatives like compact fluorescents.

Ronnie Kweller is with the Alliance to Save Energy.

RONNIE KWELLER: If every household in the United States swapped out just one traditional incandescent bulb for an energy efficient bulb, we would actually save enough energy to light 7 million homes. We’d also avoid the emissions that would be equivalent to taking a million cars off the road.

Kweller says if the total phase out of inefficient lighting is achieved by 2016, it would equal the amount of energy generated by 80 coal-burning power plants in a year.

The Australian government announced last month it would seek to ban incandescent bulbs.

In Washington, I’m Hillary Wicai for Marketplace.

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