On Thursday, Republican Senator Mike Enzi of Wyoming introduced legislation to reverse a 2007 ban on incandescent light bulbs that is scheduled to take effect January 1, 2012.
The Better Use of Light Bulbs Act (BULB) is intended to repeal the amendment that was attached to a comprehensive energy bill signed by President George W. Bush in 2007. The ban on incandescent light bulbs was intended to save energy and limit pollution.
Now, Enzi and other lawmakers are attacking the ban as a measure that limits choices for Americans. “I think it’s fine if someone wants to fill their home or business with the light from the new bulbs,” said Enzi in a statement.
“I also think it is fine if someone wants to buy an old-fashioned bulb because it works better for them,” he added. “ If left alone, the best bulb will win its rightful standing in the marketplace. Government doesn’t need to be in the business of telling people what light bulb they have to use.”
The BULB Act has 27 co-sponsors, including Republican Sens. John Barrasso of Wyoming and Jim DeMint of South Carolina.
“Americans are fully capable of choosing the best way to light their own homes and what best fits the needs and budget of their families,” said DeMint. “When Congress dictates which light bulbs folks in South Carolina must buy, it’s clear the ‘nanny state’ mentality has gotten out of control in Washington.”
A similar bill was introduced in the House by Republican Rep. Joe Barton of Texas.
Rep. Fred Upton, chairman of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, who was a champion of the light bulb ban in 2007, has promised to revisit the issue.