September 1, 2011
The sale of 60 watt incandescent light bulbs is banned in the UK from today, as part of an EU-wide strategy. A report on the BBC website was accompanied by a comment from a shopkeeper:
“This is not a democracy, it’s becoming like a dictatorship, ordering you to do this, do that. You should have a choice.”
To which the only answer can be, no it’s not like a dictatorship. Here’s why not.
The intention to ban incandescent light bulbs was agreed, unanimously, by the European Council (composed of the heads of the national governments of the member states) in March 2007, as part of a strategic plan to reduce the environmental impact of lighting. The new light bulbs are much more efficient users of energy and so will lead to a reduction in the emissions of carbon dioxide, a major contributor to climate change.
That strategic decision was enacted in a regulation drafted […]