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Karen ParhamPHI/DSM Residential Program Managerwww.PEPCO.com
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The Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007 (the “Energy Bill”), signed by the President on December 18, 2007 requires all light bulbs use 30% less energy than today’s incandescent bulbs by 2012 to 2014. The phase-out will start with 100-watt bulbs in January 2012 and end with 40-watt bulbs in January 2014. By 2020, a Tier 2 would become effective which requires all bulbs to be at least 70% more efficient (effectively equal to today’s CFLs).
It’s not entirely correct to say "CFLs will be required" or “incandescents will be phased out” because the standards set by the bill are technology neutral, and by 2012, a next generation of incandescent bulbs could satisfy the 30% increased efficiency. There are also other lighting technologies, such as halogen and LEDs that will be able to meet the new requirements and are expected to both increase in performance and drop in cost over the next few years.
Lighting is approximately 20% of the average household’s energy bill. Natural Resources Defense Council estimates this law could cut our nation’s electric bill by more than $10 billion a year.
There are many types of incandescent bulbs that are exempt from this law:
The law applies to the sale of bulbs, not the use of existing stock of bulbs.
Who wouldn’t want to do that???? Artificial lighting consumes almost 15% of a household's electricity use. Compact fluorescent lamps (CFLs) combine the energy efficiency of fluorescent lighting with the convenience and popularity of incandescent fixtures CFLs can replace incandescents (your regular old light bulbs)and they are roughly 3–4 times their wattage, saving up to 75% of the initial lighting energy. Although CFLs cost 3–10 times more than comparable incandescent bulbs, they last 6–15 times as long (6,000–15,000 hours). CFLs are most cost effective and efficient in areas where lights are on for long periods of time. You'll experience a slower payback in areas where lights are turned on for short periods of time, such as in closets and pantries. Because CFLs do not need to be changed often, they are ideal for hard-to-reach areas. Many compact fluorescent light bulbs now carry the ENERGY STAR® label. These bulbs last up to 10,000 hours and save $25 to $45 over the life of the bulb.
Compared to incandescent lamps, compact fluorescent lamps (CFLs), when used properly have the following advantages:
• Last up to 10 times longer• Use about one-fourth the energy• Produce 90% less heat, while producing more light per watt.
Table 1 below compares the wattage of commonly available incandescent lamps and the wattage of a CFL that will provide similar light levels.
Table 1. Comparable Wattage of CFLs and Incandescents
Table 2 below shows how you can save money using CFLs. This table assumes the light is on for 6 hours per day and that the electric rate is 10 cents per kilowatt-hour.
Table 2. Cost Comparisons between CFLs and Incandescents
27-Watt Compact Fluorescent
Cost of Lamps
1,642.5 days (4.5 years)
Annual Energy Cost
Lamps Replaced in 4.5 Years
Savings Over Lamp Life
You can reduce lighting energy use by selecting lighting and sources that use energy more efficiently, and by installing lighting controls.
Here are some basic methods for achieving energy-efficient indoor lighting:
You can use the chart below to compare the different types of lighting.
Lighting Comparison Chart
Color Rendition Index(CRI)
Standard "A" bulb
2900–3200 (warm to neutral)
50–90 (fair to good)
2700–6500 (warm to cold)
Compact fluorescent lamp (CFL)
50 (poor to fair)
3200–7000 (warm to cold)
Don’t panic, CFLs contain a very, very small amount of mercury sealed within the glass tubing – an average of 4 milligrams. By comparison, older thermometers contain about 500 milligrams of mercury. If the CFL broke recently, review the clean up guidelines to see if there are any reasonable actions that you could take today. For example, if you vacuumed up the debris and you haven’t yet changed and disposed of your vacuum bag, then do that.
EPA’s clean up guidelines are conservative, because they are based on the few scientific studies available to date. These studies are based on chronic (long-term) exposure to mercury vapors (exposure to mercury on a regular basis in your job). EPA plans to conduct a study to quantify the exposure levels from a broken CFL in the home and we will update our clean up guidelines as more information becomes available. If you are still concerned about your exposure to mercury, you should consult your physician. To view the EPA’s clean up guidelines go to http://www.epa.gov/mercury/spills/index.htm#fluorescent
Because CFLs contain a small amount of mercury, EPA recommends that consumers take advantage of available local recycling options for CFLs. EPA is working with CFL manufacturers and major U.S. retailers to expand recycling and disposal options. Consumers can contact their local municipal solid waste agency directly, or go to http://www.epa.gov/epawaste/hazard/wastetypes/universal/lamps/index.htm or http://www.recycleabulb.com/locations/index.aspx or http://earth911.com/ to identify local recycling options. The Home Depot and IKEA stores take back used, unbroken CFLs for free. Bring the CFLs to the returns desk.
If your state or local environmental regulatory agency permits you to put used or broken CFLs in the garbage, seal the bulb in two plastic bags and put it into the outside trash, or other protected outside location, for the next normal trash collection. Never send a fluorescent light bulb or any other mercury-containing product to an incinerator.
What follows is a handful of rebate and discount programs for CFLs. This list is by no means complete. Some electric companies offer rebates that will be applied directly to your account. Others offer you a discount at time of purchase. Contact your local electric company to see what programs they may be offering. Remember that in addition to CFLs rebates, many companies also offer rebates on the purchase of energy efficient appliances, air conditioners, and more. If you have trouble locating your electric company, you can contact your state Utility Commissioner from the list at the end of this newsletter. They can direct you to your local utility office. You can also look online at http://govengine.com/ For those readers from Ohio: at time of this publication First Energy Ohio was about to offer two free compact fluorescent light bulbs but then adding a fee onto every customer of $10.80 for each bulb. This program is currently being re-examined by the Public Utilities Commission of Ohio (PUCO). For more information check out http://www.puco.ohio.gov/PUCO/MediaRoom/MediaRelease.cfm?id=9732 or http://www.puco.ohio.gov/ or call PUCO at 800-686-PUCO
To see if there are discount or rebate programs offered by your utility company, look at your electric bill and contact Customer Service. You can also check them out online as most place their web addresses on your bill as well. If you have trouble locating your electric company, you can contact your state Utility Commissioner from the list below. They can direct you to your local utility office. You can also look online at http://govengine.com/
AlabamaPublic Service CommissionPO Box 304260Montgomery, AL 36130800-392-8050 (toll free in state)Fax: 334-242-0727http://www.psc.state.al.us/
AlaskaRegulatory Commission of Alaska701 W 8th Ave., Suite 300Anchorage, AK 99501907-276-6222800-390-2782 (toll free in state)TDD: 907-276-4533Fax: 907-276-0160http://rca.alaska.gov/RCAWeb/home.aspx
ArizonaArizona Corporation Commission1200 West Washington St.Phoenix, AZ 85007602-542-3933800-222-7000) toll free in state)TDD: 602-542-2105Fax: 602-542-5560Email: email@example.com://www.cc.state.az.us/
ArkansasPublic Service CommissionPO Box 400Little Rock, AR 72203-0400501-682-2051800-482-1164 (complaints- toll free in state)TDD: 800-682-2898Fax: 501-682-5731http://www.arkansas.gov/psc/
Public Utilities Commission
505 Van Ness Ave., Room 5218
San Francisco, CA 94102
800-649-7570 (Utility Complaints- toll free in state)
ColoradoChairmanPublic Utilities Commission1580 Logan St., Office Level 2Denver, CO 80203303-894-2070800-456-0855 (toll free in state)TDD: 303-894-2512Fax: 303-894-2065Email: PUConsumer.Complaints@dora.state.co.ushttp://www.dora.state.co.us/puc/
ConnecticutDepartment of Public Utility Control10 Franklin SquareNew Britain, CT 06051860-827-1553800-382-4586 (toll free in state)TDD: 860-827-2837Fax: 860-827-2613http://www.ct.gov/dpuc/site/default.asp
DelawareCommissionerPublic Service CommissionCannon Bldg. Suite 100861 Silver Lake Blvd.Dover, DE 19904302-739-4247800-282-8574 (toll free in state)TDD: 302-739-4333Fax: 302-739-4849http://depsc.delaware.gov/
District of ColumbiaPublic Service Commission1333 H Street, NWSuite 200, West Tower;Washington, DC 20005202-626-5100 (Consumer Services Division)Fax: 202-393-1389Email: firstname.lastname@example.org://www.dcpsc.org/
FloridaChairmanFlorida Public Service Commission2540 Shumard Oak Blvd.Tallahassee, FL 32399-0850850-413-6330800-342-3552 (toll free in state)TDD/TTY: 800-955-8771Fax: 800-511-0809Email: email@example.com://www.floridapsc.com/
GeorgiaChairpersonPublic Service Commission244 Washington StreetAtlanta, GA 30334404-656-4501800-282-5813 (toll free in state)Fax: (404)656-2341Email: firstname.lastname@example.org://www.psc.state.ga.us/
HawaiiPublic Utilities Commission465 South King St., Room 103Honolulu, HI 96813808-586-2020Fax: 808-586-2066Email: Hawaii.PUC@hawaii.govhttp://www6.hawaii.gov/budget/puc/PUC
IdahoPresidentPublic Utilities CommissionPO Box 83720Boise, ID 83720-0074208-334-0300800-432-0369 (toll free in state)Voice/TDD: 800-337-1363TDD: 800-377-3529Fax: 208-334-3762http://www.puc.state.id.us/
Commerce Commission527 East Capitol Ave.P.O. Box 19280Springfield, IL 62794-9280217-782-7295800-524-0795 (toll free in state)TTY: 800-858-9277Fax: 217-524-6859http://www.icc.illinois.gov/
IndianaUtility Regulatory CommissionConsumer Affairs Division302 West Washington St.Suite E-306Indianapolis, IN 46204317-232-2712800-851-4268 (toll free in state)TDD: 317-232-8556Fax: 317-233-2410Email: email@example.com://www.in.gov/iurc/
IowaIowa Utilities Board350 Maple St.Des Moines, IA 50319-0069515-281-3839877-565-4450 (toll free in state)Fax: 515-281-5329Email: firstname.lastname@example.org://www.state.ia.us/iub/
KansasCorporation Commission1500 SW Arrowhead Rd.Topeka, KS 66604-4027785-271-3100800-662-0027 (toll free in state)TDD: 800-766-3777Fax: 785-271--3354Email: email@example.com://www.kcc.state.ks.us/
KentuckyPublic Service Commission211 Sower Blvd.P.O. Box 615Frankfort, KY 40602502-564-3940800-772-4636 (complaints only- toll free in state)TDD/TTY: 800-648-6056Fax: 502-564-3460http://www.psc.state.ky.us/
LouisianaPublic Service CommissionPO Box 91154Baton Rouge, LA 70821-9154225-342-4404800-256-2397 (toll free in state)Fax: 225-342-2831http://www.lpsc.org/
MaineChairmanPublic Utilities Commission242 State St.Augusta, ME 04333-0018207-287-3831800-452-4699 (toll free in state)TTY: 800-437-1220Fax: 207-287-1039Email: firstname.lastname@example.org://www.maine.gov/mpuc/
MarylandChairmanPublic Service Commission6 St. Paul St., 16th FloorBaltimore, MD 21202-6806410-767-8000800-492-0474 (toll free in state)TDD: 800-735-2258Fax: 410-333-6495Email: email@example.com://webapp.psc.state.md.us/Intranet/home.cfm
MassachusettsChairmanDept. of Telecommunications and Energy1 South Station, 12th FloorBoston, MA 02110617-305-3500800-392-6066 (toll free in state)TDD: 800-323-6066Fax: 617-478-2591http://www.mass.gov/?pageID=eoeeaagencylanding&L=5&L0=Home&L1=Grants+%26+Technical+Assistance&L2=Guidance+%26+Technical+Assistance&L3=Agencies+and+Divisions&L4=Department+of+Public+Utilities+(DPU)&sid=Eoeea
MichiganPublic Service Commission6545 Mercantile Way, Suite 7P.O. Box 30221Lansing, MI 48909517-241-6180800-292-9555 (toll free in state)Fax: 517-241-6181Email: firstname.lastname@example.org://www.michigan.gov/mpsc
MinnesotaChairmanPublic Utilities Commission121 7th Place East, Suite 350St. Paul, MN 55101-2147651-296-0406800-657-3782TDD: 651-297-1200Fax: 651-297-7073Email: email@example.com://www.puc.state.mn.us/PUC/index.html
MississippiMississippi Public Service CommissionWoolfolk Building501 N West St.Jackson, MS 39201601-961-5440 (Southern District)601-961-5430 (Central District)601-961-5450 (Chairman & Northern District)800-356-6429 (Southern District)800-356-6430 (Central District)800-637-7722 (Chairman & Northern District)Fax: 601-961-5464 (Chairman & Northern District)http://www.psc.state.ms.us/
MissouriMissouri Public Service CommissionP.O. Box 360Jefferson City, MO 65102573-751-3234800-392-4211(toll free in state)Fax: 573-526-1500http://www.psc.mo.gov/
MontanaChairmanPublic Service Commission1701 Prospect Ave.P.O. Box 202601Helena, MT 59620-2601406-444-6199800-646-6150(toll free in state)TDD: 406-444-6199Fax: 406-444-7618http://www.psc.state.mt.us/
NebraskaChairmanPublic Service Commission300 The Atrium, 1200 N St.P.O. Box 94927 (68508-4927)Lincoln, NE 68509402-471-3101800-526-0017(toll free in state)TDD: 402-471-0213Fax: 402-471-0254Email: firstname.lastname@example.org://www.psc.state.ne.us/
NevadaChairmanPublic Utilities Commission1150 East William St.Carson City, NV 89701775-687-6001702-486-2600 (Las Vegas)775-738-4914 (Elko)800-992-0900 ext 87-6001 (toll free in state)Fax: 775-687-6110http://pucweb1.state.nv.us/PUCN/PUCHome.aspx?AspxAutoDetectCookieSupport=1
New Hampshire21 South Fruit St, Suite 10Bldg. No. 1Concord, NH 03301-2429603-271-2431800-735-2964(toll free in state)Fax: 603-271-3878http://www.puc.state.nh.us/
New JerseyPresidentBoard of Public UtilitiesTwo Gateway CenterNewark, NJ 07102800-624-0241(toll free in state)http://www.bpu.state.nj.us/
New MexicoDirectorPublic Regulation CommissionConsumer Relations DivisionP.O. Drawer 1269Santa Fe, NM 87504-1269505-827-6940800-663-9782(toll free in state)800-947-4722(toll free in state)TDD: 505-827-6911Fax: 505-827-6973Email: BarbaraA.Roel@state.nm.ushttp://www.nmprc.state.nm.us/
New YorkDirectorPublic Service CommissionOffice of Retail Market Development3 Empire State PlazaAlbany, NY 12223-1350518-474-1540877-342-3377 - Complaints (complaints - gas, electric, telephone)888-ASK-PSCI (275-7721) - PSC Competition Information866-GRN-PWR (476-7697) - Green Power InformationFax: 518-474-1691Email: email@example.com://www.dps.state.ny.us/
North CarolinaConsumer Services4326 Mail Service CenterRaleigh, NC 27699-4326919-733-9277Fax: 919-733-4744Email: firstname.lastname@example.org://www.ncuc.commerce.state.nc.us/
North DakotaPublic Service Commission600 E. Boulevard Ave., Dept 40812th FloorBismarck, ND 58505-0480701-328-2400800-366-6888 (toll free in state)Fax: 701-328-2410Email: email@example.com://www.psc.state.nd.us/
OhioPublic Utilities Commission180 East Broad St.Columbus, OH 43215-3793614-466-3292800-686-7826 (toll free in state)TDD: 800-686-1570 (toll free in state)Fax: 614-752-8351http://www.puco.ohio.gov/puco.cfm
OklahomaOklahoma Corporation CommissionP.O. Box 52000Oklahoma City, OK 73152-2000405-521-2211800-522-8154 (toll free in state)TDD: 405-521-3513Fax: 405-521-2087http://www.occeweb.com/
OregonConsumer Services Division550 Capitol St., NE, Suite 215P.O. Box 2148Salem, OR 97308-2148503-378-6600800-522-2404 (consumer services only-toll free in state)800-553-9600 (toll free in state)Fax: 503-378-5743Email: firstname.lastname@example.org://www.puc.state.or.us/
PennsylvaniaPublic Utilities CommissionP.O. Box 3265Harrisburg, PA 17105-3265717-783-7349800-782-1110 (toll free in state)Fax: 717-787-5813http://www.puc.state.pa.us/
Puerto RicoChairmanPublic Service CommissionPO Box 190870San Juan, PR 00919-0817787-756-1425Fax: 787-758-3418
Rhode IslandPublic Utilities Commission89 Jefferson BoulevardWarwick, RI 02888401-941-4500TDD: 401-277-3500Fax: 401-941-4885http://www.ripuc.org/
South CarolinaConsumer Services Dept.P.O. Box 11263Columbia, SC 29211803-737-5230800-922-1531 (toll free in state)TDD: 800-735-2905 (toll free in state)http://www.regulatorystaff.sc.gov/
South DakotaPublic Utilities CommissionConsumer Affairs500 East Capitol Ave.Pierre, SD 57501-5070605-773-3201800-332-1782 (consumer affairs only)Fax: 605-773-3809http://puc.sd.gov/
TennesseeChairmanTennessee Regulatory Authority460 James Robertson Pkwy.Nashville, TN 37243-0505615-741-8953800-342-8359TDD/TTY: 888-276-0677Fax: 615-741-5015http://tn.gov/tra/
TexasPublic Utilities Commission1701 North Congress Ave.P.O. Box 13326Austin, TX 78711-3326512-936-7000888-PUC-TIPS (toll free)TDD/TTY: 512-9367136Fax: 512-936-7003Email: email@example.com://www.puc.state.tx.us/
UtahChairmanPublic Service Commission160 East 300 SouthSalt Lake City, UT 84111801-530-6716800-874-0904 (toll free in state)TDD: 801-530-6716Fax: 801-530-6796Email: firstname.lastname@example.org://www.psc.state.ut.us/
VermontPublic Service Board112 State St., Drawer 20Montpelier, VT 05620-2701802-828-2358800-253-0191 (toll free in state)Fax: 802-828-3351Email: email@example.com://www.state.vt.us/psb/
VirginiaState Corporation CommissionP.O. Box 1197Richmond, VA 23218804-371-9967800-552-7945 (toll free in state)TDD: 804-371-9206Fax: 804-371-9211http://www.scc.virginia.gov/
WashingtonUtilities and Transportation Commission1300 S. Evergreen Park Dr., SWOlympia, WA 98504360-664-1173800-562-6150 (toll free in state)TTY: 360-586-8203Fax: 360-586-1150http://www.wutc.wa.gov/
West VirginiaPublic Service Commission201 Brooks St.Charleston, WV 25301304-340-0300800-344-5113 (toll free in state)Fax: 304-340-0325http://www.psc.state.wv.us/
WisconsinConsumer Affairs Program DirectorPublic Service CommissionConsumer Affairs Unit610 North Whitney Way (53705)P.O. Box 7854Madison, WI 53707-7854608-266-2001800-225-7729TDD: 608-267-1479Fax: 608-266-3957Email: firstname.lastname@example.org://psc.wi.gov
WyomingPublic Service Commission2515 Warren Ave., Suite 300Cheyenne, WY 82002307-777-7427888-570-9905 (toll free in state)TTY: 307-777-7427Fax: 307-777-5700http://psc.state.wy.us