Should Incandescent Bulbs Be Banned?
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What is a waste of energy - and what isn't?
Indeed, a somewhat philosophical question.
Take the now well known worldwide effort to ban
cheap simple ordinary but patent-expired light bulbs in favor of more complex and more expensive patented alternatives.
It is a bit like banning penicillin, so more profitable alternatives can be sold, a decision sought and welcomed by the lighting industry, under the guise of saving the planet (as referenced at the end).
Certainly, home users can save some money, on switching their most commonly used bulbs.
However society and individual savings are much less than supposed, for too many reasons to list here.
Suffice that U.S. Department of Energy stats, along with E.U. and U.K. data show a fraction of 1% national energy saved, and without counting the manufacture, transport and recycling of the more complex bulb alternatives (Source
Carbon Dioxide Emissions
Light bulbs don't burn coal or release CO2
Power plants might - and might not. If there is a problem - deal with the problem. Essentially, it depends on what energy sources they rely on.
It is far more relevant to deal with generation and grid distribution energy and emissions, than to worry about what light bulb Johnny wants to use in his bedroom.
Leaving light or other products on unnecessarily is
a waste of energy.
On the other hand, a personal choice of what product to use, and pay to use is not
a waste of energy.
Problems with Regulations
In fact, especially when there is no shortage of energy sources for electricity, and if there was then the price rise would reduce use anyway - without regulations.
Unfortunately, setting energy usage limitations on buildings, cars, washing Machines, and light bulbs will change product characteristics.
So yes, choice is reduced (Source)
Of course environmentally some may say that's okay, even if the savings are less than supposed.
But regulations are still wrong - even for those who favour bans.
Alternatives to Regulations
Taxation reduces sales, and can pay for price-lowering subsidies on alternatives as well as give Government income for say renewable low emission energy projects.
Still better however is market competition - help inventors of new (and energy saving) products to market, but then let them compete against existing products.
Look at Energizer bunny commercials, washing up liquid commercials "expensive to buy but cheap in the long run."
They don't run crying to the regulators, looking for bans on cheap alternatives.
To finish, essence ideology:
About seeing the advantage of what is created as a reason for existence, rather than look for a disadvantage as a reason for destruction.
Progress is welcomed - not feared.
Progress brings more choice and more advantages, a progress helped - not hindered - by allowing competition against that which already exists.
How many politicians should it take to change a light bulb? None
How many citizens should be allowed to choose? EveryoneFreedom Light Bulb
The Deception behind the Arguments used to ban Light Bulbs and other Products - a 13 point countdown