Saturday, 29 August 2009

Booker 'Lights' On Another DEFRA 'Cock-up'?

Writing in the Sunday Telegraph, Christopher Booker would seem to have another 'scoop' in highlighting the ineptitude of our government.

Unlike some 'professional journalists' - no names as one would not wish to deepen their embarrassment - Christopher Booker does do his research and, when presenting an argument, will quote the provenance for his reasoning!

As an 'aside' - on the subject of the 'brightness' and 'effectiveness' of the 'EU required' CFL light bulb - one can but repeat a letter which appeared in today's Daily Telegraph, from Geoffrey Hodgson in Leeds.

"Lizzie Ruffles of Which? says that people think the new bulbs are less bright than conventional ones (report, August 25). I have an old camera with a light meter which thinks the same."

On the latter point it is believed that one can safely say: I rest my case!

1 comment:

Panta Rei said...

yes the supposed savings of a switch to CFLs aren't there for many reasons
- for example, they nearly always have a power factor of 0.5 which means they draw twice the power from the power station than what they are rated for (due to how they draw current) - it doesn't show up on the meter but consumers ultimately of course have to pay for this
This is well known and covered by say the US Department of Energy
See http://www.ceolas.net/#li15x
-- also lifespan lab tests are done in 3 hour on-off cycles but of course switching CFLs on or off more often markedly shortens lifespan
-- not to mention the often ridiculed but research proven heat benefit of ordinary light bulbs, in temperate climates

In more overall terms,
Europeans and Americans choose to buy ordinary light bulbs around 9 times out of 10 (light industry data 2007-8)
Banning what people want gives the supposed savings - no point in banning an impopular product!

If new LED lights -or improved CFLs- are good,
people will buy them - no need to ban ordinary light bulbs (little point).
If they are not good, people will not buy them - no need to ban ordinary light bulbs (no point).
The arrival of the transistor didn't mean that more energy using radio valves were banned... they were bought less anyway.


Certainly we can think of the environment
-however, banning light bulbs is not the way to go...
Light bulbs have been safely used for 100+ years
We are not talking about lead paint here,
and light bulbs do not give out CO2 gas (like cars)...

= power stations give out the emissions, power stations can of course be dealt with directly
(CO2 processing and/or energy substitution, as is already planned anyway).

Ironically the environmentally questionable CFL lights are the one being promoted - in another world, those mercury containing bulbs would be the ones banned!

For all reasons why banning bulbs is wrong,
and why the energy emission savings arguments don't hold up,
and for the EU and industrial background politics behind the ban
see http://www.ceolas.net/#li1x onwards

(if banning was nonetheless desired, governments could gain (or could have gained) a lot of income from a tax that nevertheless reducedthe sales on the cheap popular bulbs which could be used towards home energy schemes and renewable projects, lowering emissions much more than remaining bulbs were causing them = in the UK for example, a pound or two on reduced c.250-300 million annual sales would give substantial sums)