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Local Governments Urge DOE to Reinstate Light Bulb Bans

Local Governments Urge DOE to Reinstate Light Bulb Bans

On October 18, 2021, 15 state attorneys general and local governments showed support of the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) proposed amendment of its energy efficiency standards of specific light sources.

The officials contend that, if adopted, the proposal could save billions of dollars in energy costs and avoid millions of metric tons of greenhouse gas emissions annually.

The DOE initially promoted the proposed lightbulb definitions through the publication of two final rules on January 19, 2017: 82 Fed. Reg. 7312, 82 Fed. Reg. 7323. However, on September 5, 2019, several months before the 2017 definitions were to take effect, the DOE withdrew the 2017 final rules: 84 Fed. Reg. 46,661.

The DOE’s proposal would reinstate expanded product definitions, originally defined in 2017, to include a wide range of light sources commonly used in homes and businesses, such as 3-way bulbs, cone-shaped reflector bulbs used in recessed and track lighting, candle-shaped bulbs used in chandeliers and sconces, and round globe-shaped bulbs often used in bathroom lighting fixtures.

Specifically, the rules discontinued exemptions for reflector lamps; rough service lamps; shatter-resistant lamps; 3-way incandescent lamps; vibration service lamps; T shape lamps of 40 watts (W) or less or length of 10 inches or more; B, BA, CA, F, G16-1/2, G25, G30, S, M-14 lamps of 40W or less; and incandescent reflector lamps. The definition also included high-lumen (2,601 and 3,300 lumens) incandescent lamps in the GSL and GSIL definitions.

The states and cities that signed the proposal were California, Colorado, Illinois, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Nevada, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, Oregon, Vermont, Washington, New York City, and Washington D.C.

“As governmental entities charged with reducing the economic costs and negative environmental impacts of energy production and use, including emissions of pollutants that contribute to climate change, we strongly support a robust national appliance and equipment efficiency program. We therefore urge DOE to finalize the proposal.”

The full letter to the Department of Energy can be found here. has covered this issue from the beginning, from both sides of the spectrum. Here are some articles we’ve published, and you can also do a search for “DOE” in the search bar for more coverage and information.


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