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IKEA stops selling incandescent light bulbs

January 4, 2011 |  3:00 pm

Lightbulbs

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.

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-- Susan Carpenter

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

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