Most consumers are used to buying incandescent bulbs for their homes. But in recent years, these bulbs have slowly been taken off the shelf and new energy-friendly LEDs have replaced them. When is a ban not a ban? When it has to do with swapping out power-hungry light bulbs for more energy-efficient ones. Incandescent bulbs weren't banned — if you have them, you can use them. They just can't be manufactured or imported any more without meeting the federal Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007 requirements. The intent of EISA is to push the United States toward increased energy independence by removing energy-gobbling products from the market. Shifting to more energy-efficient light bulbs may seem a trivial step. But put in a national context, it makes more sense. In the Northwest, we're lucky, because most of our energy comes from renewable hydropower. Other areas of the country, however, still rely on nonrenewable resources — oil, gas or, most often, coal — for the bulk of their power. Read on at Columbian.


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