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Phase Out the Incandescent Bulb? Not so Fast, IALD Says
Proposals to ban the incandescent light bulb should be carefully constructed or they will likely be ineffective, according to a new statement released by the International Association of Lighting Designers (IALD).
There are several points connected to the phasing out of incandescent lamps that should be addressed, according to IALD:
—Where established and enforced, existing energy codes have already effectively banned inefficient incandescent lamps from new commercial installations.
—There is presently no lighting technology that can replace certain types and uses of incandescent lamps. There are still drawbacks such as poor color, bad dimming performance, and high cost, that make replacement technologies ineffective replacements for incandescent in some applications. A grace period is needed to allow the development of light sources that can replace incandescent in all applications.
— Energy-efficient replacement light sources must be adapted to suit the existing electrical infrastructure. Those with simple and clear-cut applications must be made available as soon as proven, but there will be cases in which an efficient source is not ready for a particular use. When products cannot achieve appropriate goals, continuance of incandescent technology specific to those situations should be permitted.
— The complete environmental impact and life-cycle carbon footprint of each replacement technology must be understood. Incandescent lamps should not be banned until their replacements are proven to be an overall environmental improvement.
—Replacement lamps must be cost-effective. Because replacement light sources are often more expensive than incandescent sources, conversion cost is a concern. Subsidies may be needed to help low-income consumers.
—Phasing-out of inefficient light sources is one step in reducing lighting energy use. The most efficient electric light source is the one that is turned off. Effective use of daylight and aggressive use of lighting control technologies will be needed to significantly reduce lighting energy use.