Bill filed to ban incandescent light bulbs

A BILL has been filed at the Senate seeking to ban the manufacture, importation, and sale of incandescent light bulbs in the country in a bid to develop and promote the use of energy-efficient and environment-friendly ones.

Senate bill 3062 or the "Incandescent Light Bulb Ban Act,∏ filed by Senator Miriam Defensor-Santiago last week, said the government should prohibit the use of the said light bulbs to make way for more energy-efficient lighting and to promote environmental awareness and conserve resources.

An incandescent light bulb produces more heat and consumes more energy compared to other lighting fixtures. Light sources, such as the fluorescent lamp, high-intensity discharge lamps, and LED lamps are said to offer higher efficiency.

"The manufacture, importation, sale, and use of incandescent light bulbs and other similar lightings and fixtures which does not meet the Minimum Energy Performance Standards shall be prohibited five years from the passage of this Act," the bill read.

The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) as well as the Department of Energy (DoE) will phase-out the use of such light bulbs in the market in three years upon enactment into law, it added.

Meanwhile, the bill mandates the DTI and DoE to ensure that lighting products should not be less than 15 lumens per watt. It also mandates that Philippine Council for Industry and Energy (PCIERD) -- an attached agency of the science and technology department -- to conduct research on lighting alternatives.

The bill, however, stressed that the use of incandescent light bulbs may be allowed for scientific, research, medical and technological purposes following approval from the PCIERD.

Sellers would face imprisonment of six months to a year and a fine of P50,000 to P100,000, while buyers face imprisonment of one to six months and a fine of P5,000 to P10,000.

The Philippines could have been the first Asian country to ban the use of the incandescent light bulb when then-President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo in February 2008, called for its ban by 2010 in favor of more energy-efficient fluorescent ones. But the plan did not pan out.

The South American countries of Brazil and Venezuela banned the use of incandescent light bulbs on 2005. Meanwhile, Argentina, Russia and Canada are scheduled to phase-out the lighting fixture by next year, while the US and Malaysia will follow by 2014. -- Antonio Siegfrid O. Alegado

Source for this article: B World Online
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