How Many Australian Politicians Does It Take To Change A Light Bulb?

from the no-joke dept

A few weeks back, we noted that a California state politician was thinking about banning incandescent light bulbs in favor of more energy efficient fluorescent bulbs. Of course, we didn't understand why it needed legal backing. Fluorescent bulbs offer plenty of advantages in terms of using a lot less energy and lasting a lot longer. Some people still don't like the light they give off, but they're getting better all the time. Given some education on the issue, it seems only natural that people will increasingly move towards fluorescent bulbs on their own, without bothering with pointless legislation. However, apparently that's not good enough for Australia, where the government has announced similar plans to ban the sale of incandescent bulbs in an effort to reduce greenhouse gas emissions as well as cut household power bills. Of course, as a few people in the article point out, switching to fluorescent bulbs shouldn't really have much of an effect on greenhouse gases, so that's not the best reasoning. And, still, no one is explaining why this needs legislation when it's likely to happen all by itself as people become better educated on how they can save money with fluorescent bulbs.
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  1. identicon
    MyNameIsMatt, 21 Feb 2007 @ 12:10pm

    Sometimes markets need a push

    I'm all for the markets controlling progress, but sometimes that just isn't happening. For the most part, people haven't changed because the quality isn't yet equal for most brands. Plus, when people talk about cost savings, most people don't really care about saving an extra $30 a year. However, from the government's perspective, that $30 is a lot of money, and in CA where we have such a strained grid that gets pushed often, that overall drop in demand is a big deal.

    So, I feel for people who complain about quality. I'm in that boat too, but since some commenters seem to have found a good brand, I'm not that concerned, and anyway, boo hoo for those people (which includes me admittedly). Tough life. You still have light, and for those with special needs, then get what you need. However, there will be very little significant suffering from laws that push progress in this area, and the governments and communities as a whole will see the benefit more than the individual, which is why governments may need to push progress instead of the market (as this is possibly a failure in the market to drive progress).

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