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July 11, 2011

House Republicans Lighting Plan: Candles

Anyone want to see a photo of the House Republicans' latest energy plan?

Republican energy plan
Who wants candles? The Republicans may be starting their own run on Yankee Candles right now thanks to a measure they will vote on - and very likely pass - in the House of Representatives.

House Republicans are pushing the "Better Use of Light Bulbs" Act, or BULB Act (HR 2417), because they just hate those new curly, more energy efficient light bulbs that Congress included in an energy efficiency bill that overwhelmingly, and with bipartisan support, passed back in 2007. Yes, 2007, meaning President Bush signed it into law.

They want their old, inefficient light bulbs, darn it! Too bad those 2007 standards are estimated to save consumers about $100 per family per year, or about $12 billion nationally. From our friends over at the League of Conservation Voters:

Many proponents of this legislation (the BULB Act) falsely claim that the(2007) standards ban the incandescent light bulb. In reality, the standards simply require the bulbs to be more efficient and manufacturers are already making a variety of bulbs that meet the new standards, including incandescent bulbs. Consumers can chose to buy more efficient incandescent bulbs or CFLs and LEDs, which provide even greater cost and energy savings.

This new BULB Act also contains this language: "No State or local regulation, or revision thereof, concerning the energy efficiency or energy use of medium screw base general service incandescent lamps shall be effective."

That's right, states and cities can't even approve their own energy efficiency measures calling for more better bulbs.

Today our friends over at the National Resources Defense Council unveiled the latest folks who are calling the BULB Act ridiculous: None other than Thomas Edison's own descendants.

Here's one example:

"I am appalled that any legislative body would be so narrow-minded as to discourage new and advanced technology. If my great-grandfather were alive today…he would have already moved on to the better, cleaner, sustainable technology well before certain legislators put their opinions into the mix…It is ironic that the very people who are supporting the legislation…are the ones who espouse free markets. Edison would certainly have recognized that the wave of the future-- profits--is to make it better, cheaper and, yes, cleaner and more efficient." – Barry Edison Sloane (Great-grandson of Thomas A. Edison.)

Anyone else think Congress should be working on more important issues?

-- Heather Moyer

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