Somewhere in the great beyond, Thomas Edison is cheering President Donald Trump and his Department of Energy.
This week, the Trump Administration rolled back yet another of Barack Obama’s idiot legacy ideas (even if it was put in motion by President George W. Bush), and changed the rules on what light bulbs can be sold in the United States.
The filing from the Energy Department would prevent new efficiency requirements from implementation on Jan. 1 under a previous law passed in 2007 during President George W. Bush’s administration. That law phased out inefficient incandescent and halogen bulbs, and was approved with bipartisan support in Congress.
The standards that were scheduled to take effect in January applied to about half of the roughly 6 billion light bulbs used in the U.S., and would have prevented millions of tons of carbon dioxide emissions from entering the atmosphere.
The bulbs at stake are decorative globes in bathrooms, candle-shaped lights, three-way light bulbs and reflector bulbs. These four categories collectively account for about 2.7 billion light sockets, or almost half of conventional sockets in the U.S., according to the Natural Resources Defense Council. A new rule that will publish on Thursday will get rid of a previous standard that would have required adding these four categories to the energy-efficient group.
The Energy Department said Wednesday that the final rule would maintain existing definitions of general service lamp and general service incandescent lamps and return “choice to consumers.”
“Different households have different needs, and it was both unfair and illegal to limit their options by expanding the definition of GSLs to include the hundreds of millions of light bulbs that Congress explicitly exempted,” a Department of Energy official told CNBC.
In other words, cut glass chandeliers will actually look like the elegant finishes they are supposed to be rather than glow like ice.
Energy efficiency advocates, naturally, decried this decision even though industry insiders claim LED and CFL bulbs actually consume more energy than their incandescent counterparts.