ALA suggests 5 improvements for lighting legislation bill.

Press Release Summary:

The ALA suggestions for California Bill No. 722 include establishment of an energy efficiency standard rather than a ban on a specific type of lighting technology. Also, halogen light sources, incandescent bulbs that are less than 40 W, and specialty bulbs should be exempt from legislation. The ALA also calls for collection sites for proper disposal of fluorescent light bulbs and consumer and student education on energy-efficient lighting sources.

Original Press Release:

American Lighting Association Suggests Five Improvements to CA Bill No. 722

Proposed Bill Would Ban Incandescent Light Bulbs

DALLAS, Tex. - The American Lighting Association (ALA) has created a list of five improvements it believes should be included in California Bill No. 722.

The bill, which was authored by Assemblyman Lloyd Levine, D-Sherman Oaks, and cleared the Assembly Utilities and Commerce Committee April 23, seeks to prohibit the sale of medium screw-based incandescent light bulbs starting in 2012.

A medium screw-based incandescent, in everyday terms, is the common household light bulb invented by Thomas Edison and used by most people in table lamps and ceiling fixtures.

In many instances, switching from incandescent bulbs to fluorescent bulbs can be a quick and easy process that saves energy. However, not all incandescent bulbs are easily replaced for the lighting application they serve. For this reason, the ALA opposes an outright ban on all types of incandescent light bulbs.

For instance, the small candelabra bulbs used in crystal chandeliers and other decorative lighting fixtures are incandescent bulbs. Consumers may find that CFLs either do not fit or are large and unattractive in their existing decorative fixtures.

The halogen bulbs used to spotlight family portraits, sculptures and artwork are incandescent bulbs. Because CFLs are not effective at directing beams of light, halogen bulbs may be the most energy-efficient choice in this particular lighting application.

Incandescent bulbs may also be used with dimming systems for mood lighting and energy savings. Some CFLs are not dimmable at all; others do not dim to as low a level as incandescent bulbs without significant expense.

"Our association has been and continues to be a very strong supporter of the promotion and use of energy-efficient lighting in homes, businesses and government facilities," says ALA President Richard D. Upton. "However, we believe the proper application of lighting - in as energy-efficient a way as modernly possible - should be the ultimate goal."

The ALA recommends that California Bill No. 722 to ban incandescent light bulbs be modified to include the following positive alternatives:

1. A lumen per watt energy efficiency standard should be established rather than a ban on a specific type of lighting technology. A ten-year goal should be set with the legislation being neutral as to how the standard is met.

Lumen per watt is an expression of how much light is produced by a bulb compared to how much power (wattage) is put in. The light bulb that produces the greatest number of lumens per one watt of power is the most efficient.

2. Exempt halogen light sources from legislation.

3. Exempt incandescent bulbs that are less than 40 watts and specialty bulbs from legislation.

4. Act to insure the proper disposal of fluorescent light bulbs by creating convenient collection sites for burned-out bulbs. Include the possibility of intermediate collection points such as lighting retail stores which, while safely handling the bulbs, would not need to bear the same licensing challenges as disposal companies.

5. Gain a market transformation to more energy-efficient lighting through a pro-active program of consumer and student education that broadly utilizes the media and other effective communication techniques. Over a period of time (10 years), such a program would build a base of educated consumers who would continue to make well-informed, energy-efficient lighting choices.

Ways in which the ALA has been and continues to support improvements in lighting energy efficiency include:

Trains lighting showroom owners, managers and sales people on energy efficiency through online courses, the Residential Lighting Training Manual and regional seminars.

Promotes the development of attractive energy-efficient lighting fixtures through its Lighting for Tomorrow design competition in partnership with the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) and the Consortium for Energy Efficiency (CEE).

Partners with ENERGY STAR® in a broad number of activities and programs including the Platform Matrix of efficient light bulbs and ballasts with the National Electrical Manufacturers Association (NEMA).

Interfaces with other organizations such as the International Dark Sky Association (IDA) in support of dark-sky friendly, high efficiency outdoor and landscape lighting.

The ALA is a trade association representing nearly 1,500 fixture, bulb and ceiling fan manufacturers; lighting retail stores; manufacturer sales representatives; and lighting designers in the U.S., Canada and the Caribbean. Founded in 1949, the association is based in Dallas, Texas.

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