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IKEA stops selling incandescent light bulbs


IKEA announced it will no longer stock or sell incandescent light bulbs, effective Tuesday. The world's largest retailer of home furnishings says it is the first major retailer to stop selling incandescents.

"IKEA is committed to integrating sustainable practices into our business practices ... and [is] constantly looking at ways to help support our customers with everyday environmentally responsible solutions that will improve their lives," IKEA U.S. President Mike Ward said in a press announcement Tuesday. "Eliminating incandescents is just one simple way for IKEA customers to reduce energy consumption and greenhouse gases."

IKEA sells compact fluorescent bulbs, or CFLs, which last six to 10 times longer than incandescent bulbs and use 80% less energy. It also sells LED lamps, which are 70% more efficient than incandescents, and halogen lamps, which consume 30% less energy than traditional light bulbs.

IKEA's move comes far in advance of the federally mandated phase-out of incandescent bulbs. The Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007 bans 100-watt incandescents beginning in 2012 and 60- and 40-watt incandescents in 2014.

IKEA's announcement also comes at a time when research on alternative lighting is booming. The California Lighting Technology Center at the University of California-Davis is currently researching various energy-saving lighting systems, including those that automatically respond to available daylight, downlights that shine light into a can fixture then down into a room, bi-level stairwell lighting that brightens when people are on stairs and dims when they're gone and occupancy sensors that turn off lights in empty rooms.


Green trends for 2011: alternative mobility and home energy efficiency

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-- Susan Carpenter

Photo: Incandescent and compact fluorescent light bulbs. Credit: Glenn Koenig / Los Angeles Times

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I suppose I'm going to have to stock up on incandescent bulbs those CFL bulbs are a joke I had one as a porch light and it takes 20 minutes for the thing to get "bright" and when it does get "bright" it is no where near the incandescent ones. Also I've had them come apart on me it still burned but the bulb seperated from the base the thing looks like the inside of a radio circuit board, resistors way too much stuff for a light bulb. My biggest gripe though is they don't put out enough light.

While IKEA is the first, the rest of retailers nationwide are soon to follow as we approach the mandated incandescent phase-out. The question is, what’s the best alternative? CFLs contain mercury. LEDs produce a blueish light and hurt the pocketbook. Now there's a safer, greener and more affordable alternative called Electron Stimulated Luminescence (ESL). American electrical engineers reapplied cathode-ray technology to create ESL, a new clean lighting alternative. It uses accelerated electrons to stimulate phosphor and create light, making the surface of the bulb glow.

The natural light it produces is virtually indistinguishable from the traditional incandescent lamp we’re used to, and unlike the CFL, it’s mercury-free. It’s also 70% more efficient than the incandescent lamp and lasts 10,000 hours.

More info is available on our website, where you can now order ESL for your home.

Phil Styles, CEO of Vu1

CFLs are an interim solution. LEDs are already great for overhead lighting, and now can replace 40-60 watt standard incandescent bulbs. The light looks great, they are instant on, and there is no mercury. LED prices are still high, but the lifespan and energy savings makes up for it in a few years. They will take off once prices drop below $15.

I've been using nothing but CFLs for the past several years. While the claims of longevity are somewhat exaggerated, the power savings are not. They use 25% of the energy incandescents require. When I switched, my electric bill went down $20 per month. They paid for themselves very quickly. Quality of light? They've gotten to where the color of light is nearly indistinguishable from incandescent. Not harsh or unpleasant at all. The only legit gripe I really have with them, is that the ones I use outside take awhile to get up to full brightness when it's cold.

Well, I've just made my last purchase from Ikea. Complete morons. CFL's have not lived up to their long life claims, the light is cold and harsh, and they have industrial mercury along with other.......

Here is a link to the US Gov. Website on how to clean up a broken CFL. If it wasn't so pathetic, it would be true comedy!

I cannot agree with the claim that CFLs last 10 times longer than incandescent bulbs, especially the ones from IKEA.

Great.....mercury light bulbs! Another pansy, liberal snow job....trying to solve a problem that doesn't exist. Idiots....

Ugly lighting aside, it's a flat out lie that "CFLs last six to 10 times longer than incandescent bulbs." I've had them burn out just like incandescent bulbs.

And how much mercury contamination is a "small amount of mercury" multiplied by millions and billions of CFL lightbulbs that will end up in the trash?

Also, enjoy the mercury when you or your child happens to break one.


My parents have switched to CFL's in the living room and the quality of light is just awful! I'm still on incandescents, but I'll definitely need to look around for CFL's with an incandescent type light. Or get a storage room before 2014 and stock up on incandescents!

On another environmental note (especially valid in L.A.), the batteries for Prius' are extremely toxic for the environment upon disposal/replacement. Also, they mine the lithium for these batteries and that is one of the most damaging mining practices on earth. Many experts will tell you that driving a gas lovin' SUV is better for the environment that a Toyota Prius. Again, we don't like to talk about that. And why? Becasue the green industry is a billion dolloar machine.

Gee whiz, folks. Chill. From the National Geographioc website:
"There's a lot of misleading information out there," said Joel Hogue, president of Elemental Services and Consulting, an Ohio-based company specializing in the cleanup of sites contaminated with mercury. "But when people learn the facts, the level of hysteria dies down."

Like with many other household products, Hogue said, the use of CFLs requires some commonsense precautions. But if a bulb breaks, his company's clean-up services are not required.

"There's an extremely small amount of mercury in those bulbs," Hogue said. "It's a very minimal risk" and can easily be cleaned up at home.

One CFL contains a hundred times less mercury than is found in a single dental amalgam filling or old-style glass thermometer, according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

Banning incandescents is a prime example of big government getting out of control. Certainly many bulbs in a home can be changed out for CFL's or LED's and the savings on energy and expense is obvious. But for certain applications nothing compares to the visual results of an incandescent. Yet, we have big brother saying what is better. Maybe big brother should focus on saving energy and money by: stopping war activity, eliminating the national circle jerk on illegal drugs and immigration and all the waste in dollars and fuel consumed by a semi-annual election process. Cutting out Edison's best invention is meaningless by comparison.

Do you have any idea how hard it is to break a CFL?

Be sure to keep the number of your local hazardous material clean up crew handy. When CFL's break they release mercury... also, you are not supposed to put them in the trash like other light bulbs because they have to be disposed of like any other hazardous materials. That is unless they have come up with some sort of non-hazardous CFL's in the last year or so.

Ask the "google" or "bing" what comes up when you put in "compact fluorescent bulbs hazards" Be informed!

The compacts have mercury in them, if you break one the clean-up (if done the way CA wants) and disposal is insane.

Just dispose of them correctly... otherwise these "green" bubls do far more damage to the environment than the old school bulbs... but nobody likes to talk about that.

I hope they have natural lighting bulbs in CFL's too.

I don't want to live in a world lit by subpar light.

Wow, you would have thought that laws here would catch up with the rest of world. The Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007 was passed so recently.


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