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One Billion Bulbs

Most people would rather have five dollars now than ten dollars next month. One Billion Bulbs is doing its best to retrain these hoarding instincts.

The goal of One Billion Bulbs is to convince users that switching from incandescent to compact fluorescent lightbulbs makes good environmental and economic sense. They already have some retail heavyweights on board: as Andy Rubin, Wal-Mart vice president for sustainability, told NPR’s Robert Seigel, Wal-Mart currently saves $8 million dollars a year by using CFLs in its in-store fan-deliers.


One Billion Bulbs invites you to reap the benefits of CFLs in your own home, and sweetens the deal with a little interstate competition.

Get ready to screw your way to a greener future.

Hat-tip, Seth Fitzsimmons.


  1. #1 bigTom
    February 10, 2007

    I would be surprised if many Sciblogs readers haven’t already made the switch. Whats really needed is to get the less informed part of the population to switch. Typically -especially in discount stores you have to look harder to find the CFL bulbs than the incandescents -and the CFLs typically cost $5-$10, with incandescents under a dollar. Your typical cash strapped consumer probably doesn’t realize its in his economic interest to buy the more expensive CFLs. Twice I have seen bins of under $1 CFL bins in discount stores -I think they were subsidized by grants. We need a way to greatly expand these programs, as this should be a very cost effective way to help both the environment, and the poor.

  2. #2 Tony P
    February 10, 2007

    How interesting that the northeast and northwest are the two area closest to reaching the goal.

    I switched a while back – the local supermarket had three packs of the warm white 13W bulbs for $1.98, I bought ten of them. Put it this way, the first month they saved nearly $100 on my electric bill. I’d say that’s a good return.

    But part of the reason that those two areas in the first paragraph are closest to goal is probably because we pay some of the highest electricity rates. When you factor in transport costs, I pay 14 cents a kWh. And deregulation was supposed to SAVE us money. But I believe part of the deregulation was forcing utilities to fund conservation programs.

    So that’s why those bulbs were $1.98 for a three pack.

  3. #3 natural cynic
    February 10, 2007

    Get ready to screw your way to a greener future.

    Sounds like fun. And the snuggling after
    helps too.

    Oh, you mean the ones that I got at the 99cent store.

  4. #4 Robert P.
    February 10, 2007

    I think we need to pass a law that makes high-energy bulbs illegal – like we did for leaded gas.

  5. #5 bigTom
    February 10, 2007

    “I think we need to pass a law that makes high-energy bulbs illegal”
    Robert, California is considering just such a law.

  6. #6 knobody
    February 11, 2007

    I think we need to pass a law that makes high-energy bulbs illegal – like we did for leaded gas.

    which would really make the four ceiling fixtures i have on dimmer switches useless. also, while i do have some fluorescent bulbs in other places in my house, for more accurate color i have a mixture of fluorescent and incandescent in my bathroom. and the snakes need incandescent for heat as well as light.

    i’m all in favor of people moving to cfl’s where it’s feasible, but to pass laws forcing people to do so is just as short sighted as 6 liter toilets that need to be flushed three times to get the shit to go down, and just as invasive as the government telling me i can’t eat trans-fats if i want to.

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    August 7, 2011

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