Argentina to 'Ban the Bulb'

Feature story - 14 March, 2008
As the energy revolution gathers pace in order to avoid catastrophic climate change, Argentina becomes the latest country to announce that it is banning energy wasting bulbs.

A 5 metre high 'ban the bulb' display in front of the Argentinean Congress.

In the last two years, over 10 countries have committed to banning the bulb with another half a dozen countries planning to do the same or using initiatives to effectively consign the old incandescent bulb to the dustbin of history.

Check out who is on the right path to banning the bulb and starting their energy revolution

Argentina's move to ban the bulb by 2010 is the first legislative step taken by a South American country to rid itself of inefficient lighting.

The campaign victory comes after a very active 'ban the bulb' campaign by our Argentinean office. In announcing the move at an energy efficiency conference, President Kirchner praised our campaign by saying, "we are following the proposal from Greenpeace".

Venezuela and Cuba have given out the more efficient compact fluorescent (CFL) bulbs for free to its citizens whilst Brazil has subsidised the cost of CFL's but none of them have passed legislation banning them outright as Argentina now intends to do.

"A product from the 19th century has no place in today's society. To protect the climate we need to set strong efficiency standards" said Rosario Espina from Greenpeace Argentina.

The world needs to reduce its carbon output by 80 percent by 2050 if it is to avoid the worst effects of climate change. Banning inefficient lighting is a good first step but it is not enough on its own to stop human induced climate change in its tracks.

Increasing the efficiency of all household appliances, buildings, cars, etc and switching to renewable energy can achieve the required carbon savings to avoid the catastrophic climate change.

An overview of countries that have banned incandescent lightbulbs, announced a ban, or are considering a ban.
  • Ireland by early 2009
  • Australia by 2010
  • Argentina by 2010
  • Italy by 2010
  • France announced by 2010 but no further details
  • UK by 2011 via voluntary retailer agreements
  • Netherlands by 2011 voluntarily
  • Canada by 2012
  • US by 2014
  • China in 2017
  • Cuba providing free CFLs
  • Venezuela providing free CFLs
  • Brazil subsidises CFLs
  • Russia has begun a marketplace initiative
  • Belgium announced a ban but no further details
  • Japan considering ban
  • New Zealand considering ban

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