In the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007, the federal government mandated that all US retailers cease selling incandescent light bulbs by 2012, and we’re pleased to announce that Ikea just became the first major US retailer to do so! The Scandinavian home furnishings giant made their intentions to stop carrying incandescents back in July this year, and it’s nice to see that they’ve kept their promise.
Incandescent bulbs have already been banned in Europe so it makes sense that Ikea (a Swedish company) would be leading the charge on this initiative in the United States. This fall, Ikea introduced a halogen bulb that fits into a conventional socket but uses 1/3 less energy than conventional incandescent light bulbs. Going forward, these new bulbs, along with CFLs and LEDs will be the only bulbs they’ll stock.
Though the government seems serious about their mandate, the public is a bit unaware of the upcoming change in lighting sales. Energy efficient lighting has been slow to pick up the pace in the United States — mostly because of the initial price of the bulbs — and a 2010 survey by Ikea showed that 61% of Americans were unaware that the federal government was banning incandescent bulbs starting in 2012. Hopefully, people will know more about what is going on when they notice that Ikea is no longer selling incandescents and props to the retailer for lighting the way.