Lots of people use compact fluorescent light bulbs and claim they’re helping the environment. They’re wrong! Compact fluorescent light bulbs contain mercury, a dangerous water pollutant.
“But compact fluorescent light bulbs use less energy than incandescent light bulbs,” say these self-proclaimed environmentalists. If they really cared about the environment, they’d be using LED light bulbs. There is no mercury in LED light bulbs, and LED light bulbs use a whole lot less energy than incandescent light bulbs. They’re more expensive than compact fluorescent light bulbs, but if you’re not willing to spend a few extra dollars to save our planet then you’re not really an environmentalist.
LED light bulbs are as energy-efficient as compact fluorescent light bulbs, according to a study reported in the New York Times:
Conducted by the Siemens Corporate Technology Centre for Eco Innovations (Siemens is the parent of Osram and Sylvania), the report examines the energy needed to create and power an LED lamp. Even the energy needed to ship a lamp from the factory in China to an installation in Europe was taken into account.
The study used a 25,000-hour LED lamp life as a constant, comparing the energy needed throughout its life to that used for 25 1,000-hour incandescents and 2.5 10,000-hour compact fluorescents.
The findings, according to a summary of the study: today’s LED lamps are essentially as energy efficient as compact fluorescents, in the amount of energy needed to create, recycle and provide light. Osram said it expected those numbers to improve as LEDs become more energy efficient.
LED light bulbs don’t contain mercury, so they’re much safer than compact fluorescent light bulbs.
If you decide to replace your dangerous CFL bulbs with LED bulbs, make sure you dispose of the CFL bulbs properly. Send them to Washington!