Old-fashioned Bulbs No Good, Even For Heat

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

A letter from the Madison Peak Oil Group's own Ross DePaola appeared in The Capital Times on April 9:

Dear Editor: One of your readers argued that it wouldn't be a good idea to replace all our incandescent bulbs with compact fluorescent bulbs because we live in a cold climate and would use the heat that is given off to heat our homes.

If your goal was to heat your home with electric heating, that wouldn't be a bad idea; however, we all know that electric heating is expensive, inefficient and creates more greenhouse gases. Burning coal to generate electricity for heating a home is equivalent to having about a 33 percent efficient furnace (67 percent goes to waste), while gas furnaces operate at 70 percent to 95 percent efficiency.

If that isn't enough, let's not forget that the bulbs will pay for themselves over a short period of time, the color the lamps give off is excellent compared to old fluorescents, and you'll replace bulbs much less often.

Ingenious and better than the original, compact fluorescent bulbs are an American idea and invention that we should be proud of.