If you love the soft, warm glow of incandescent light bulbs, you won't have to say goodbye to them just yet.
The Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007, signed by President George W. Bush, set the standards of energy efficiency for light bulbs, along with several household appliances, such as refrigerators, air conditioners and dish washers in the United States. The bill was set to enforce the energy-efficiency standards for light bulbs on Jan. 1, 2012.
What is your experience with compact fluorescent light bulbs? What kind of light bulbs do you use and why?
But on Dec. 15, House and Senate delegates agreed on a $1 trillion omnibus bill that included a provision preventing the Department of Energy from enforcing those energy standards.
As far as lighting goes, compact fluorescent light bulbs, or CFLs, are more energy efficient than incandescent light bulbs.
"You get the same light with one-third of the energy consumed," said Chris Rohlfing, manager of member services at Boone Electric Cooperative.
Rohlfing said that when purchasing CFL bulbs, it's important to make sure they have an Energy Star label. Energy Star products are held to high energy efficiency standards by both the Department of Energy and the Environmental Protection Agency, according to the product website.
"When our members are energy efficient, it helps us ... to keep our rates lower," Rohlfing said.
The Columbia Water and Light Department offers a Lighting Incentive Program for commercial buildings. After making lighting system upgrades, commercial customers can receive $300 for every kilowatt of reduction in their energy use, Water and Light spokeswoman Connie Kacprowicz said.
Kacprowicz said Columbia Water and Light also has a Home Performance with Energy Star program, through which homes are given a total energy profile and assessed for potential rebates. In addition to lighting, other aspects of a home are considered, such as insulation.