Light bulb battle at Virginia State Capitol

Posted on: 10:00 pm, January 23, 2012, by , updated on: 12:15pm, January 25, 2012

RICHMOND, Va. (WTVR) — It’s as life-changing as the automobile, but soon, the incandescent light bulb will dim with time.

Lawmakers in Washington are looking to save energy and money by banning the bulbs. However, Virginia Delegate Bob Marshall told CBS 6 that he thinks Congress has got it all wrong.

“They claimed it was more energy efficient than some of these other bulbs,” said Marshall.

Marshall said based on his research, the incandescent light bulbs are just as efficient as fluorescent bulbs in a home setting because you’re flicking the lights on and off much more frequently than at the office.

Marshall said that these newer home fluorescent bulbs require a lot more energy to power up.

Yet, Glen Besa with the Virginia Sierra Club said instead that Delegate Marshall is wrong.

“Compact fluorescent light bulbs are like 30% of the electricity that you use for incandescent bulbs, so, you’re saving a tremendous amount of electricity,” said Besa.

Marshall told CBS 6 that he’s not just worried about energy efficiency, but safety also. Mercury is emitted when fluorescent light bulbs are broken.

“Congress took mercury lights off the street because they were a hazard. That doesn’t make any sense,” said Marshall.

“More mercury comes from the coal-fired power plants that burn coal to light our inefficient lighting, said Besa.

Marshall introduced legislation to keep incandescent light bulbs on Virginia store shelves.